Voters in Bowling Green, Ohio decided
on Tuesday to keep one gay protections ordinance, but reject a
The two measures, approved by city
leaders in August 2009, were challenged by a citizen's group and put
on the November 2 ballot.
An ordinance that bans discrimination
based on sexual orientation, gender identity (transgender
protections) and HIV status – among other factors – in the area
of housing won narrow approval by voters (50.15% to 49.85% with all
But a second ordinance that covers
public accommodations, education and employment was rejected by
voters (50.71% to 49.29% with all precincts reporting.)
The group ONE
Bowling Green, with the support of the National Gay and Lesbian
Task Force, campaigned to keep the laws in place.
Campaign Director Kim Welter told
Cleveland gay weekly The
Gay People's Chronicle that she was uncertain of how the
measures would fare because her group, which employed three
additional people, could not afford to hire a professional poll
The campaign to dump the ordinances was
called BG Citizens
Voting No To Special Rights' Discrimination and was helmed by
three activists connected with the Tea Party movement and anti-gay
Christian groups, the paper reported.
“We oppose the two ordinances
because: they violate religious freedom, they pose a public health
risk, they violate privacy rights of women and girls in restrooms,
they lay the groundwork for homosexual marriage,” wrote Gary
Thompson of the group.