South Bend, Indiana lawmakers decided
Monday to table indefinitely a proposed ordinance that sought to ban
employment discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender
identity, the Chicago Tribune reported.
About 200 people packed a city council
meeting room to hear two hours of public debate on the measure.
Opponents of the bill were led by
Patrick Mangan, executive director of Citizens for Community Values
(CCV). The CCV created NoSpecialRights.net, a website opposed to gay
rights. The group claims it's “Lovingly opposing the homosexual
At the site, members are asked to sign
a petition in opposition to gay marriage, civil unions for gay
couples, hate crimes legislation, sensitivity training for public
sector and government workers, and adding gay-inclusive policies to
corporate, municipal or philanthropic anti-discrimination statements.
Mangan, wearing a red sticker that read
“Special Status (equals) Special Rights,” argued that the
proposal was an attack on the rights of employers and said the
protections were unnecessary.
“They have not been treated
intolerantly,” Mangan told city leaders. “In fact, they have
been treated tolerantly, even when a majority of society disagrees
with their lifestyle.”
Supporters argued that the ordinance
would help improve the city's image.
Councilman Oliver Davis, one of the
measure's three sponsors, asked for the proposal to be tabled after
it became clear that it would not be approved.