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Grand Island Council member announces new GLBT proposal
After a gay rights issue was shot down about a month ago, one council member is bringing forward a new proposal.
Larry Carney might be leaving his post in a few months, but he's still fighting for one key issue, sexual orientation.
"The city government of Grand Island needs to step up to the plate and recognize that there is discrimination as it exists now within our personnel rules when it comes to hiring and we need to change that," said Larry Carney, Grand Island Councilman.
Currently there is no clause to prevent harassment based on sexual orientation in the hiring process for the city of Grand Island.
"This is not about sexual orientation basically. What this is about is discrimination," said Carney.
But Carney's newest proposal would add a protected class based on sexual orientation to equal employment opportunities.
"What it amounts to is if we're going to hire a new employee we would not be able to discriminate based upon sexual orientation only," said Carney.
He brought a similar idea to city council a month ago. But, the proposal was voted down.
"He mentioned that it's a small step and that's probably wise," said Judy Sandeen, PFLAG.
This measure, if passed, only applies to the hiring process of city employees.
"There have been a lot of other political stunts going on in Grand Island and this will actually do some good for individuals and that's why I'm supportive of whatever can happen," said Brain Whitecalf, Grand Island, Resident.
"In my case, it's not political. I see it as a moral issue I see it as striking out at bigotry and really bringing ourselves into the 21st century in terms of that class of people," said Carney.
One of the opposing arguments...
"If they named this one group of people as a non–discrimination group that wouldn't be fair because the others who weren't and that kind of made sense to me I really don't understand why they would have gotten rid of that in the first place," said Sandeen.
Carney announced that he will be leaving after this term, so why did he choose to bring up this proposal?
"Whether I left or didn't leave or am going to leave or not is really unimportant from my perspective. I am dead set against discrimination," said Carney
"It might help that one individual out there that feels he's the only person out there that's gay or she's the only person out there that's a lesbian" said Whitecalf.
Carney says the proposal is scheduled to be on the agenda for the November 13th city council meeting.
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