By Brian Marshall
The LGBT community in the Orion Township area came away satisfied after the July 5 Township meeting.
The group has been lobbying for a Human Rights ordinance making it illegal to discriminate against anyone, namely those in its group. The township board approved a resolution that forbids discrimination of any kind. The official resolution reads, in part:
“Whereas, it is the intent of Orion Township that no person be denied equal protection of the laws; nor shall any person be denied the enjoyment of his or her civil or political rights or to be discriminated against in employment, housing, or public accommodations or harassed because of actual or perceived race, color, religion, national origin, sex, age, height, weight, marital status, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression.”
Orion Township Supervisor Chris Barnett said the board carefully considered the proposal.
“They originally asked us to adopt an ordinance, which is like a law. We weren’t comfortable with that,” Barnett said. “We adopted a resolution which is basically a statement of the board. We are against all forms of discrimination in the township.”
Lisa Goyette, who has spearheaded the cause of punishing harrassment against the LGBT community, was very pleased with the board’s decision.
“The approval further communicates that this township values all including those of the LGBT community. Inclusion and tolerance are wonderful attributes of a town to possess and it makes me very proud that those qualities are deemed important here,” Goyette said.
“The support voiced so articulately at the township meeting helped to educate the board as to the necessity of why these types of documents are needed. We know that discrimination is harmful and hurts the overall health of a community and those that are being marginalized. While we had hoped that an ordinance could have been approved we are very pleased with the township’s offer of adopting a resolution. We were able to work together and that felt really good.”
By Brian Marshall