The Montevallo City Council on Monday approved an ordinance that protects the LGBT community from discrimination.

According to the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), the nation's largest LGBT rights advocate, Montevallo will become the second city in Alabama to approve such an ordinance. Birmingham became the first city in the state last year.

“Today, Montevallo’s elected leaders have sent a strong message that they will support their LGBTQ constituents – not just with words, but also with policy,” said Eva Kendrick, HRC Alabama state director. “Now that Montevallo has joined Birmingham in passing a comprehensive LGBTQ-inclusive non-discrimination ordinance, it is time for other cities in Alabama to follow these communities’ lead in protecting all people from bias and discrimination.”

The ordinance prohibits discrimination in housing, public accommodations and employment on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity.

At a forum in September to discuss the proposed ordinance, a father of a gay adolescent son spoke in support. “This says something as a community,” he said. “Passing this ordinance would make the whole family [of an LGBT] child feel safer.”

A pastor said he opposed it because it might be used to undermine religious freedom.

Montevallo, home of the University of Montevallo, a public liberal arts university with roughly 3,000 students, has a population of 6,323, according to the 2010 census.

According to HRC, Alabama is among the 31 states without comprehensive LGBT-inclusive non-discrimination protections.