City council adds gender identity to anti-discrimination ordinan - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

City council adds gender identity to anti-discrimination ordinance

MEMPHIS, TN - (WMC-TV) – A landmark Memphis City Council vote Tuesday night approved a non-discrimination ordinance that includes protections for sexual orientation. 

It's been a long time coming; the efforts to get sexual protections in a city ordinance have repeatedly popped up. Tuesday night the council finally gave its approval. 

"It's a good day in Memphis," said one supporter. 

It was a good day for this student because the Memphis City Council approved a non-discrimination ordinance that has protections in the workplace for sexual orientation and gender identity. The vote came before a packed city council chambers filled with supporters. 

"I'm excited. I will be entering the workforce soon," said another supporter. 

"I think it's fantastic," said Rebecca Terrel. "I feel like we are propelling Memphis into the present." 

It was not an easy ride. 

"There's been a lot of contention surrounding this one," said council member Wanda Halbert. 

The non-discrimination legislation was sponsored by Shea Flinn and Lee Harris.  

"It feels like groundhog day because we are here again," said council member Lee Harris. "I hope we're ready to take action." 

The council approved the ordinance 9 to 4. 

"Having protections in place that will allow them recourse when they are discriminated against is what we need," Lee Gottlieb said. 

The vote will be approved when the council approves the minutes in two weeks. The ordinance applies only to the city of Memphis and not with groups that contract with the city.

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