Here’s an inside look at where the support and opposition stand with SOGI as the countdown to the vote in April gets closer.
Where we are:
- Springfield City Council members passed an amendment in October 2014 to include sexual orientation and gender identity under those protected against discrimination in employment and housing.
- Citizens will vote in April 2015 whether to repeal the ordinance to remove the protections or to keep the amendment in place.
- Springfield leaders have started rapid movement in their campaigns both in support and opposition.
- The Springfield Report has talked to community leaders on both sides to get updates on the ongoing issue.
President of The Hardy Group, a pastoral leadership consulting firm, and a leader for Assemblies of God
“We’re dealing with small businesses. This ordinance says all business owners in Springfield have to subscribe to the definition of ‘right’ as held by those six city council members.”
Director of Communications for One Springfield and the No Repeal campaign
“People could lose their jobs, they could lose their place to live, they could be kicked out of a restaurant—just for being gay or transgender.”
Chair of the Mayor’s Commission on Human Rights and Community Relations
“In 2010, the commission formed a small task force to study the ordinance and effects of the ordinance if it was passed. We did that for about two years and then we took that to the community involvement luncheon and city council.”
Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Task Force member
“There are a lot of folks out there who have no idea that anything is happening and they don’t understand the issues or know there is a vote in April, so we’re just trying to educate folks about that.”
Videos by Amanda White, Jesse Inman, Britney Walters, Kiara Lewis and Rose Marthis