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Charlotte Community Leaders Discuss New Proposed Nondiscrimination Ordinance

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Ian Taylor
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Mecklenburg County commissioners unanimously approved a resolution that calls for members of the LGBTQ community to be treated with “dignity and respect.” Charlotte City Council, meanwhile, is discussing expanding its nondiscrimination ordinance.

Monday, Aug. 9, 2021

Charlotte City Council is scheduled to vote on a new nondiscrimination ordinance Monday. This ordinance will provide legal protection for the LGBTQ community and people who wear natural, textured hairstyles — meaning any hair texture, color or type of style historically associated with race or national origin.

The proposal would also ban businesses with fewer than 15 people from discriminating against any employee or prospective hire based on sexual orientation and gender identity.

This has been a long-awaited step after five years without local LGBTQ protections. City Council expanded its existing nondiscrimination ordinance in 2016 to include LGBTQ protections, but this prompted backlash which came in the form of House Bill 2 from the North Carolina state legislature. After national outrage, the state repealed HB2 and replaced it with House Bill 142.

We'll take a deeper look to see how this new ordinance will affect Charlotte, how it would affect small businesses, and how this would affect the LGBTQ community.

Guests:

Patrick Baker, Charlotte city attorney
Julie Eiselt, mayor pro tem
Larken Egleston, Charlotte City Council member
Daniel Valdez, president of Charlotte Pride

Dante Miller is a community engagement producer for WFAE and a Report for America (RFA) Corps members. Dante first joined WFAE in 2020 through RFA to work as part of a unique partnership with the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library and Digital Public Library of America. Her work in that project allowed her to use radio, online stories, Wikipedia entries and events to meet the community's news and information needs.