Fayetteville Mayor Lioneld Jordan has selected a group of people to help provide input on how to implement the city’s new civil rights ordinance approved by the City Council in August.
The ordinance, which goes into effect Sept. 20, prohibits business owners and landlords from unjustly firing or evicting someone because of their sexual orientation, gender identity, socioeconomic background, marital status or veteran status. It creates a civil rights administrator position to receive complaints from residents who feel they are victims of those specific types of discrimination.
The idea for the group was suggested by Steve Clark, president and CEO of the Fayetteville Chamber of Commerce, in a Aug. 28 letter (PDF) written to Jordan.
The group include representatives of the LGBT, disabled, and ethnic minority communities; business leaders; area employers; members from the local real estate industry; civil rights lawyers; faith leaders; and city representatives.
“I tried to choose a very diverse group of people who represent not only the protected classes and the business owners, but also those who were against the ordinance itself,” said Jordan.
Jordan will serve as chairman of the group’s input session, which is scheduled for 6 p.m Thursday, Sept. 4 inside room 326 at City Hall, 113 W. Mountain St. in downtown Fayetteville.
Jordan said residents are invited to attend, but the meeting will not include a public comment period, as nearly 10 hours of public input was received during the final reading of the ordinance on Aug. 19.
The meeting is scheduled to be filmed by and later aired on the Fayetteville Government Channel.
Civil rights ordinance input panel
Lioneld Jordan (group chairman) – Mayor, City of Fayetteville
Bill Bradley – President and CEO, Washington Regional Medical Center; Chairman, Fayetteville Chamber of Commerce
Tony Uth – Partner CPA, HoganTaylor Accounting; Treasurer, Fayetteville Chamber of Commerce
Anne Mourney – General counsel, Lindsey Management Co., Inc.
Sue Madison – Landlord; former Arkansas state representative and senator
Laura Hampton – Representative, disabled community
Maria Baez de Hicks – Representative, Hispanic community
Jim Huffman – Pastor, Christ’s Church
Lowell Grisham – Rector, St. Paul’s Episcopal Church
Curtiss Smith – Pastor, St. James Missionary Baptist Church
Kim Coats – Special counsel, Littler Mendelson employment and labor law practice
Mark Martin – Partner attorney, Martin Law Firm
Kate Bartow – Representative, NWA Center for Equality
James Rector – Board president, NWA Center for Equality
Anne Shelley – Executive director, Northwest Arkansas Rape Crisis Center
Danielle Wood – Director, University of Arkansas Office of Equal Opportunity and Compliance
Lindsley Smith – Director of Communications, City of Fayetteville
Leif Olson – Planner, City of Fayetteville
Kit Williams – City Attorney, City of Fayetteville