Fairness Bill to be presented in Bowling Green City Commission Meeting

Published: Feb. 15, 2017 at 8:16 PM CST
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The supporters of a Fairness Ordinance in Bowling Green say it would make the city more welcoming.

"By adding just two categories, sexual orientation and gender identity, we would do so much to show that Bowling Green is open for business and it's open and welcome for all people, of all identities," Western Kentucky University History Professor and member of the Bowling Green Fairness, Dr. Patricia Minter said.

City Commissioner Slim Nash will be presenting a Fairness Bill at next week's meeting and he will need a second.

"Before there can be any public discussion of that. So we hope fervently, that one of his colleagues will understand the importance of equal rights for all citizens of Bowling Green," Dr. Minter added.

"Do we want to be a community that says, we're against discrimination, no matter what the discrimination is about, but we're against discrimination. Or do we want to say that we're a city that accepts the fact that the discrimination exists," City Commissioner, Slim Nash said.

City Commissioner Slim Nash says discrimination, is discrimination.

"Whether it's a popular group, or an unpopular group. Whether it's based upon a myriad of factors. In this case, sexual orientation and gender identity," Nash added.

There are some who say that there is not a need for a Fairness Ordinance because there isn't any data showing discrimination has happened in Bowling Green. But others say, those who have faced it, are afraid to come forward.

"Hey, I didn't know that person was LGBTQ and I don't want them living on my property. Then they've exposed themselves to being evicted. Same way with employment," Nash said.

Commissioner Nash says religious entities are excluded from the Fairness Ordinance.

"They will not be compelled in this ordinance to hire somebody that is LGBTQ, because that particular lifestyle may be contradictory to the things, the religious teachings that they're offering in their school," Nash said.

There are 8 other cities in the state that have a Fairness Ordinance.

The Bowling Green City Commission will take place next Tuesday, at 4:30 p.m. in the City Hall.