On Tuesday, Ogden became the latest
Utah city or municipality to approve a gay protections ordinance.
Eleven municipalities have already
followed Salt Lake City's lead in approving legislation protecting
gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people from discrimination.
Members of the Ogden City Council
originally approved with a 4-3 vote the two ordinances that outlaw
discrimination in the areas of employment and housing at a meeting
last week, but Mayor Matthew Godfrey promised to veto them unless
they included greater religious exceptions.
The new language straddles a fine line
between protecting the right to speak out against gay people and
It says: “Expressions of religious or
other deeply held beliefs are exempt from this chapter, provided they
do not become so pervasive or severe as to alter the terms,
conditions or privileges of employment. Religious or other deeply
held beliefs may not, however, excuse conduct that otherwise violates
Members unanimously approved the
In October 2009, Salt Lake City
approved two groundbreaking ordinances that make it illegal to
discriminate based on sexual orientation or gender identity
(transgender protections) in the areas of employment and housing.
Other municipalities that have approved
similar measures include Park City – home of the Sundance Festival
– Logan, West Valley, Taylorsville, Murray, Midvale, Salt Lake
County, Summit County and Grand County.