JACKSONVILLE – By a vote of 17 to 2, the Jacksonville City Council voted against passing the original language of an LGBT antidiscrimination bill. The measure called for banning discrimination against LGBT persons with respect to housing and employment.
“Human Rights Ordinance 296” would have added six words— “sexual orientation, gender identity, or expression”—to the category of classes already protected by the city’s anti-discrimination law.
Attorney Carrington Meade, a supporter of the measure, was philosophical in defeat. “It’s ok, it’s not over,” he said. “You can’t expect to win easily the first time around.”
ACLU Wins Suit For Gay-Straight Alliance at Ocala High School OCALA – On August 14, a federal judge in Jacksonville ordered the Marion County School District to permit the formation of a Gay- Straight Alliance at Vanguard High School. The ruling settles a suit brought by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) on behalf of students, after School Superintendent Jim Yancey prohibited the club’s establishment. The suit accused school officials of violating the First Amendment’s rights of association, and the Equal Access Act.