Three months after the idea was introduced and after one community forum and dozens of speakers at city council meetings, more questions confront the Roeland Park City Council over its proposed anti-discrimination ordinance.
Additionally, an anonymous flyer opposing the ordinance has appeared on some Roeland Park doorsteps. The single sheet raises several points that opponents have made at past council meetings, but does not identify the individuals who composed it. The flyer (embedded below) appeared Sunday morning, according to residents who received it. Several points made in the flyer also were part of a presentation to the council from the Alliance Defending Freedom.
The council, without taking additional public comment, will try to work through a long list of questions about the ordinance in an attempt to prepare for a vote that could come as early as next Monday. A substantial number of questions are on the agenda for a 7 p.m. workshop at city hall tonight. The list of questions and suggested changes to the ordinance make up the council packet for the session.
The proposed ordinance, introduced in March, adds gender identity and sexual orientation to a list of protected classes that are covered on employment, housing, public accommodations and other retail services. The ordinance as it stands covers all but the smallest businesses that are required to be licensed by the city. However, it specifically excludes churches, school districts and now has language that would also exempt non-profit fraternal or social organizations.
But the list of questions and proposed changes to the ordinance is long and covers a host of topics. The council will attempt to wade through those potential changes in its discussion tonight. The questions and suggestions for additions to the ordinance are found in the packet of materials prepared for the meeting.
Among the areas to be explored by the council are a number about bathroom, locker room and shower room policies. A human rights commission, an ad hoc committee, adding veterans as a protected class, enforcement issues and a host of other questions are on the agenda.