Non-discrimination ordinances now official

Save Story

Estimated read time: 2-3 minutes

This archived news story is available only for your personal, non-commercial use. Information in the story may be outdated or superseded by additional information. Reading or replaying the story in its archived form does not constitute a republication of the story.

SALT LAKE CITY -- Salt Lake City's pro-gay non-discrimination ordinances are now official. At the Salt Lake City Library, surrounded by both media and interested citizens, Mayor Ralph Becker signed the new ordinances into effect.

Starting April 2, it will be illegal for an employer or a landlord to discriminate against a person because of their sexual orientation or gender identification.

Those two non-discrimination ordinances passed city council unanimously a week ago. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints endorsed the measures.

Jonathan Jeppson, who is a member of the Human Rights Commission in Utah, said the ordinances are "a matter of human dignity and human rights."

Mayor Ralph Becker and council chairman Carlton Christensen signed the ordinances into effect at a small ceremony. Members of the gay-lesbian-transgendered community looked on with interest; some of them showing up just to watch.

"I never thought I'd see this," one man said.

The mayor said this was the result of two years of intense work. Dozens of people have been involved in crafting the final versions.

The mayor said addressing discrimination against people because of their gender identity or sexual orientation was one of his top priorities when he was running for office. He and others are pleased he was able to complete that goal.

"It's important symbolically," Becker said, "but it's important for me that we provide protections for people who face injustices. And to me that's what this is all about."

"I think this is another step forward for equality throughout the state, and we hope that this continues," said Stephanie Pappas of pro-gay rights group Equality Utah.

Mayor Becker said there had been a positive response to passing the ordinances from around the nation.

As far as the Legislature, there is no proposal to try and "undo" what Salt Lake City has done. There is currently no proposal to prevent other cities from doing the same thing, although some lawmakers would like to do that.

In a statement from his spokeswoman, Gov. Gary Herbert said he respected Salt Lake City's right to pass ordinances that affect its citizens. He was reserving judgment beyond that, the statement said.


Related stories

Most recent Politics stories

Related topics

Richard Piatt


    Get informative articles and interesting stories delivered to your inbox weekly. Subscribe to the Trending 5.
    By subscribing, you acknowledge and agree to's Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

    KSL Weather Forecast