Ordinance looks to protect LGBT community in workplace - WNEM TV 5

Ordinance looks to protect LGBT community in workplace

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BAY CITY, MI (WNEM) -

One week after a derogatory note was left in the mailbox of a gay couple in Bay City, city leaders are looking to strengthen their local anti-discrimination ordinances.

"It's a really good idea. It's sad it's 2016 and it's all coming to light. People have been getting discriminated forever, at least now the city is recognizing it and trying to put it on the books,” Angel Arocha said.

Monday, the city's commission will discuss a revised ordinance that would create a committee to oversee and instigate discrimination complaints throughout Bay City. If approved, the ordinance could be in place by December.

"I guess if it's a board to help guide them and certain counseling and how to handle situations of their not able to that would be fine,” Mike Peruski said.

According to a new FBI report, hate crimes are up 6 percent this year across the nation. In Bay City, though, longtime residents said their home town feels like a safe place.

"Bay City is still a good town. There are still a lot of good people here in Bay City, so hopefully those good people will overrule those ones that are causing the problems,” Arocha said.

While many people said the city's new plan sounds like a good idea but others said they've got an easier solution.

“If somebody is not going to serve me because of any particular reason, I'll just be sure to tell everybody I know not to go there and then I'll go to his competitor and I'll make sure that person gets all the business,” Mike Sova said.

Traverse city and Holland have passed similar ordinances and now have working committees that file reports with their city attorneys after investigating complains.

Bay City already has a similar ordinance on the books for city employees and contractors.

The new ordinance will be read tonight at 7:30.

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