Friday, December 10, 2010

Love Rally in the News: Group Forms To Counter Ordinance That Takes Away City Benefits

This story by ABC-7 Reporter Maria Garcia gives a good perspective on where we are at in terms of our efforts against the El Pasoans For Traditional Family Values recent voter approved removal of domestic partners benefits for the city.

This weekend we are meeting with lawyers to write the language of the petition and by Monday will have copies for your support and signature. Check back into this blog and The Lisa D Show for updates, also fan me on Facebook to keep udpated. Facebook

EL PASO, Texas -- A new group is considering starting a petition to convince El Paso City Council to add a Non-Discrimination Clause to the city charter that would trump the voter-passed initiative slated to take away the health insurance of gay and unwed partners of city employees.

The voter-passed initiative, put on the ballot by a petition from local religious group, El Pasoans For Traditional Family Values, passed 55 to 45-percent last month. The group has always insisted their only target was to take away the health insurance of gay and unwed partners of city employees. According to city representatives, only 19 employees signed up for those benefits, which were approved by City Council in a budget meeting last year.

However, the City Attorney said that because the initiative only mentioned city employees, their spouses and their legal dependents, more than 200 unintended city employees and retirees will lose their health insurance, too.

"We're not a place that says that certain individuals should be discriminated against, for any reason", said local attorney Lyda Ness. She, along with radio host Lisa Degliantoni, or "Lisa D" are considering gathering the 1,548 signatures of registered city voters to get their initiative on the May ballot. It's a last option, since Representative Susie Byrd said she plans to ask Council, once again, to consider adding the Non-Discrimination clause. If the council rejects Byrd's idea, said Ness, then they would petition.

Click here for the full story.

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