LGBT rights

Elisa Swartzmiller / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

A West Virginia city's newly reinstated anti-discrimination ordinance that drew opposition from some residents will be put to a public vote next year.

Dave Mistich / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

The Morgantown City Council passed a law last night that provides employment, housing and other protections for members of the gay, bisexual and transgender communities, making the city the eleventh municipality in West Virginia to provide legally enforceable protections based on sexual orientation or gender identity.

 

After discussion that stretched well over two hours, council members voted 7 to 0 in favor of a measure that expands its Human Rights Commission. The ordinance provides a legal course of action in civil court related to cases involving discrimination based on the added statuses.

Wikimedia commons / Brandon W. Holmes

Wheeling has become West Virginia's 11th city to pass a policy protecting the housing and employment rights for LGBT citizens.

The Wheeling City Council voted 7-0 to establish new anti-discrimination protections in the city's human rights ordinance based on sexual orientation, gender identity and veteran status on Tuesday.

Cecelia Mason / Shepherd University

Lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender rights were the topic of a public forum Tuesday morning at Shepherd University. Speakers at the event said West Virginia has come far in accepting LGBT people but not far enough.

Dozens of community members, Shepherd faculty, students, and alumni attended the discussion Tuesday on LGBT rights.

courtesy Fairness West Virginia

This story was updated March 2, 7:40 pm: House Bill 4012 died on a 7 to 27 vote by the West Virginia Senate. The bill, known as the Religious Freedom Protection Act, would have established a process for courts to follow when people or businesses claimed that government action was infringing upon their religious beliefs.

17-year old Davis Kimble, a young activist who had spoken out against the bill earlier this week, had this response to the Senate's decision:"I think this serves as a victory for not only minorities across the state, but also for passionate community leaders who stood up and made their voices heard. It's a shame we had to fight this fight, but it shows a willingness on the part of our state legislatures to hear the people's voices and do what's best for the state and its wonderful people."

wikimedia / Wikimedia

The Kanawha County school board has approved policy changes meant to protect prospective and current lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender employees from discrimination.

The Charleston Gazette-Mail reports that the board approved the changes at a meeting Thursday. Among the changes was adding "ancestry and sexual orientation" to the equal opportunity section of the school system's cultural diversity and human relations policy.

On West Virginia Morning, Liz McCormick reports from Martinsburg where the city council is considering an ordinance that would prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation.  And Ashton Marra talks with governors attending the National Governors Association meeting at the Greenbrier last week about their efforts to combat substance abuse.  These stories on West Virginia Morning from West Virginia Public Radio news – telling West Virginia’s story.


theodoranian / wikimedia Commons

West Virginia advocacy groups are reacting to a new federal ruling that further protects the LGBT community. A Thursday ruling by the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has deemed discrimination against workers based on sexual orientation illegal.

The Legislature Today
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Update: Late Friday afternoon, the House Government Organization Committee postponed indefinitely further consideration of House Bill 2881.  The last day for committees to pass bills is Sunday, March 1, 2015.

The West Virginia House of Delegates held a public hearing on HB 2881 on Friday morning. The West Virginia Intrastate Commerce Improvement Act would prohibit cities and counties from enacting or enforcing non-discrimination laws that do not already exist on the state level.

West Virginia University’s College of Law is hosting a forum this evening to discuss marriage equality in West Virginia. Evan Wolfson is the featured guest at Tuesday's event.
 

Evan Wolfson is the founder and President of Freedom to Marry, a nation-wide campaign to end the exclusion of same-sex couples from marriage. Currently, the state of West Virginia makes no allowances for same-sex couples to be wed.