Glendale adds protections for LGBTQ people, Chandler in discussions

Glendale has become the third Phoenix city to add protections for LGBTQ people in the past two months. The Glendale City Council unanimously approved an ordinance that prohibits discrimination in public places, housing and places of employment, and extends the protections to the LGBTQ community.

Glendale became the ninth Arizona city to enact nondiscrimination ordinances that offers LGBTQ protections.

Mesa and Scottsdale passed ordinances in March and April, respectively. A fourth Valley city, Chandler, is discussing a similar move. Elsewhere in Arizona, Flagstaff, Sedona, Tempe, Tucson, and Winslow have added protections.

But Glendale, like Mesa, included exemptions for small businesses and religious organizations.

Glendale Mayor Jerry Weiers

"The largest city in the East Valley and the largest city in the West Valley will have the same exact legislation," Glendale Mayor Jerry Weiers said. "I hope that other cities will consider adopting a similar ordinance and that they will use ours as a model so we will have consistency."

Once Glendale's ordinance takes effect almost half of Arizonans will be covered by nondiscrimination ordinances with LGBTQ protections, based on 2019 U.S. Census Bureau estimates. But there is still no consistent statewide protection.

What Glendale's new ordinance does

It prohibits discrimination based on "race, color, ethnicity, national origin, age, disability, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, veteran's status, marital status, or familial status." It extends protections to housing, public places such as hotels and bars to businesses with five or more employees.

Exempt: Religious organizations, religious schools, charter schools, single-sex sports or recreation leagues and single-sex areas such as gender-specific gyms.

Chandler, the largest Arizona city without a nondiscrimination ordinance, is in the early stages of discussing similar legislation. The City Council was updated on policies and regulations related to protections for LGBTQ residents during a closed-door session.

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