Glendale AZ considers adding Transgender protections to anti Bias law

Glendale AZ considers adding Transgender protections

On June 18th Glendale Arizona officials have hosted the second of the scheduled four meetings giving residents an opportunity to discuss adding gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, U.S. military status, marital status or familial status to Glendale’s anti Bias laws. The city allowed the 80 people who attended the first two meetings to remain anonymous. In return, the City received the desired feedback from their citizens.

The backstory.

The Glendale City council aware that the NFL was considering moving Superbowl 2015 and not wanting a repeat of the MLK holiday fiasco unanimously approved the “Unity Pledge” in December 2014 prior to hosting Super Bowl 2015.. The pledge was created by the human rights group One Community, reports The Arizona Republic.

The non-binding pledge asks Arizona businesses and government entities to support equal treatment in housing, employment and hospitality for LGBT people, reports LGBT Nation.

Approximately 1,100 businesses statewide have signed the “Unity Pledge.”

During that time period, the council also considered adding LGBT protections but balked when conservatives objected to including public accommodation provisions for transgender people, according to AZ Central.

Glendale Councilman Gary Sherwood, who pushed for the city to sign the pledge, said he wanted the city to go further with an anti-discrimination ordinance before the Super Bowl.

Although there weren’t any records kept as to what was discussed at any of the meetings, it was obvious that transgender people’s addition was hotly debated.

Video of the second meeting is edited so public comment wasn’t seen or heard.

Your west Valley.com reports One of the participants who did identify herself, Erica Keppler, a transgender woman, said an ordinance is needed and urged Glendale to follow the lead of Arizona cities — including Phoenix and Tempe — which already have laws.

“We in the transgender community live in fear. You see all kinds of hate and vile spewed out against transgender people. I feel I have to hide and I always have to be worried if someone figures out who I am, I don’t know what they’re going to do. If these sort of things happen, we don’t have any recourse,” said Keppler, 53, a software engineer for Honeywell Aerospace in Phoenix.

“In the city of Phoenix and Tempe, it is very comforting to me just to know those laws are there. It gives us a little bit of comfort, knowing the government has our back if something happens,” she continued.

While no decisions have been made on what Glendale’s law could look like, city officials are seeking input beyond groups not protected under state and federal anti-discrimination laws. They are asking to hear from individuals who identify with one of the following groups: race, ethnicity, gender, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability status or U.S. military veteran status.

Glendale officials will take public input at two more meetings:

• 10 a.m.-noon Saturday, July 25, at Foothills Branch Library, 19055 N. 57th Ave. Sign-in begins 9:30 a.m.

• 6-8 p.m. Thursday, July 30, Renaissance Glendale Hotel & Spa, 9495 W. Coyotes Blvd. Sign-in begins 5:30 p.m

Editor in Chief at

Kelli Busey an outspoken gonzo style journalist has been writing since 2007. In 2008, she brought the Dallas Advocate on-line and has articles published by the Reconciling Ministries Network, The Transsexual Menace, The Daily Kos, Frock Magazine the TransAdvocate, the Dallas Voice and The Advocate. Kelli, an avid runner is editor in chief at Planet Transgender which she founded in 2007.

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