City councilors in Lewiston, Idaho, have spoken out against a proposed non-discrimination ordinance that would make it illegal to discriminate in housing, employment and public accommodation based upon sexual orientation and gender identity
City councilors in Lewiston, Idaho, have spoken out against a proposed non-discrimination ordinance that would make it illegal to discriminate in housing, employment and public accommodation based upon sexual orientation and gender identity, reports KLEWTV.
Lewiston City Council Mayor Pro Tem R.J. Johnson said that although all seven members of the council are against discrimination based on sexual orientation, ordinance 4614 would infringe “on our basic civil liberties."
According to Jesse Maldonado, the youngest person ever elected to the Lewiston City Council, it is currently “legal to discriminate in the workforce, hiring or firing, or refusing someone service or not giving someone housing if they are gay lesbian, or transgender and there's no ramifications for doing so. So basically what this ordinance would do would make it a misdemeanor to do that which could then be punishable by jail time or a fine."
However, councilor Clinton Daniels said that 4614 could lead to retailers being “put in jail for six months” with a fine of $1,000 for refusing to serve LGBT customers. In a statement, Daniels said:
"My strong belief in liberty compels me to oppose ordinances that do not respect private property, freedom of association, and voluntary contracts; even when the stated goal of such ordinances is something I support.
When you engage in commerce, whether it be for a personal sale or a commercial one, it is a form of a contract, and in a free society all contracts should be voluntary."
Maldonado has since asked supporters to attend the next of two further readings of the ordinance on September 22nd.
Watch a KLEW TV reports, AFTER THE JUMP…