Jacksonville, Fl. - Recommending no further legislative action by the city council, Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry announces direct action he’ll be taking to bring the city in compliance with discrimination laws.
This comes after Curry hosted three community conversations on Jacksonville’s Human Rights Ordinance. Expansion of the HRO to include explicit protections against discimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity is being considered by the Jacksonville City Council.
Curry says he has directed his staff to develop a directive requiring Jacksonville’s employment polices to “preclude and prohibit all forms of employment discrimination upon any basis” under the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. But this announcment refers only to government employees, not private businesses.
“These actions move our city forward, while demonstrating my commitment to defending individual rights and promoting respect and equality in our workplace,” Curry said in a statement Friday. “We will now join other large employers who have been business leaders in anti-discriminatory employment related practices.”
HRO bills from Councilmen Tommy Hazouri and Bill Gullfirod will be read to the city council Thursday. Those provisions would affect workplace and housing discrimination in all aspects of Jacksonville life, not only for government employees.
While Hazouri commends this step by the mayor, he still believes much more should be done.
"I'm very proud of our city but our city should get off of being frozen in time and move forward," Hazouri told WOKV. "If we have a Jacksonville solution, I don't care if we copy other cities, it's the right solution for our city."
The last try by the city council to expand the HRO failed in 2012.