Nondiscrimination Ordinance

Kellie Parker / Flickr Creative Commons

Earlier this week, Latah County officials voted to update their employee handbook to ban discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity. The rule only applies to LGBT people who work for the county, and not the entire population.

“At this point it’s not on our agenda to take that up, although it could be," says Latah County Commissioner Tom Lamar. "It could be talked about more.”

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The city of Hailey will soon be added to a growing list of Idaho towns with non-discrimination ordinances that protect lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.

Hailey's new law will take effect later this spring, and will ban discrimination based on a person's sexual orientation or gender identity. At that point, more than 450,000 Idahoans will be protected under one of these municipal laws. That's almost 30 percent of the state's population.

Tim Connor / Flickr Creative Commons

Hailey is set to become the 11th city in Idaho to pass a non-discrimination ordinance. The law – which bans discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity – comes after the Idaho Legislature failed to pass a similar statewide measure earlier this year.

Hailey city attorney Ned Williamson drafted the ordinance, and says he looked to Boise's 2012 law as a model.

Officials in the north-central Idaho city of Lewiston have passed an ordinance banning discrimination in housing, employment and public accommodation based on sexual orientation or gender identity.

The Lewiston Tribune reports that the Lewiston City Council passed the ordinance Monday on a 5-2 vote.

Lewiston is the ninth city in Idaho to pass an ordinance protecting gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people from discrimination.

A recount has confirmed last month's vote by Pocatello residents retaining an ordinance banning discrimination against a person because of sexual orientation or gender identity.

The recount on Friday was done at the request of a group opposed to the city ordinance approved by the Pocatello City Council in June 2013 and backed by voters on May 20.

Bannock County election officials found discrepancies with about a dozen votes but not near enough to change the outcome of the election result.

Eric Fredricks / Flickr Creative Commons

A small town on Idaho's border with Wyoming is the latest city to approve employment, housing and public accommodation protections for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people.

Victor, Idaho is the eighth city to approve a non-discrimination ordinance. It says people can’t be discriminated against based on their sexual orientation or gender identity.  

A group opposed to Pocatello's non-discrimination ordinance retained by voters last month is seeking a recount.

Bannock County election officials tell the Idaho State Journal that Vote Yes Pocatello made the request Monday.

The group wants a recount in 20 of Pocatello's 39 precincts from the May 20 vote, as well as a recount of early and absentee votes.

The city of Pocatello in June 2013 passed an ordinance banning discrimination against a person because of sexual orientation or gender identity.

Aaron Webb / Flickr Creative Commons

Tuesday, voters in Pocatello will decide the fate of a law that’s been on the books for less than a year. Proposition 1 asks whether the city’s ordinance protecting lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender residents should remain or be repealed. A 'yes' vote would repeal the law.

Jessica Robinson / Northwest News Network

This winter, protests hit the Idaho Capitol at a level rarely seen in Boise. Gay rights activists blocked entrances and were marched away in handcuffs.

They want Idaho's Republican-controlled Legislature to pass an anti-discrimination law similar to those in Oregon and Washington. It would make it illegal for employers, landlords and most businesses to discriminate based on sexual orientation and gender identity.

But lawmakers plan to wrap up the session this Friday without ever printing the bill.

Pressure through civil disobedience

Frankie Barnhill / Boise State Public Radio

If this were math class, Boise would have failed its latest test.

Boise got 56 points out of a possible 100 on the Human Rights Campaign’s (HRC) municipal equality index. This is the second year the national gay rights advocacy group has ranked Idaho's capital.

The DC-based organization looked at policies in all the capital cities in the country, as well as each state’s largest towns.

Update at 6:47 p.m. Senate Passes Bill:

With a vote of 61-30, the Senate voted to move forward on legislation that would prohibit workplace discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity.

The vote Monday opens the floor to debate on the bill and the Senate is expected to schedule a full vote by week's end.

Our original post continues:

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Idaho Falls is now the seventh Idaho town to pass a law that provides some protection to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender residents. The Idaho Falls City Council Thursday night passed a law barring discrimination in housing and employment. The vote came after hours of public testimony from people for  -- and against -- the ordinance.

Jessica Robinson / Northwest News Network

Republican Party leaders are urging the Idaho Legislature to put a stop to local communities' efforts to provide discrimination protections for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals. 

The approval of the non-binding resolution came Saturday at the GOP's annual Central Committee summer meeting in McCall.

The Idaho Republican Party’s state central committee will meet in McCall Saturday. Members will talk about possible rule changes and resolutions. One topic up for discussion: the committee will take a closer look at six cities which have passed lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) protections.

Jessica Robinson / Northwest News Network

After more than six hours of public testimony and debate, Pocatello's city council passed a non-discrimination ordinance early Friday morning. The new law protects lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender [LGBT] people from housing, employment and public accommodation discrimination.

This makes the eastern Idaho city the latest in a wave of local governments to vote for a so-called "add the words" law, in absence of the state Legislature's inaction. Currently there is no statewide protection of this kind.

Coeur d'Alene has become the fifth city in Idaho to pass a law that bans discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.

The City Council late Tuesday approved an anti-discrimination law by a 5-1 vote.

The ordinance protects people in areas of employment and public accommodations, such as restaurants and housing, by preventing discrimination solely based on "sexual orientation, gender identity and expression."

Jessica Robinson / Northwest News Network

Idaho's conflicting views on gay rights is playing out in the northern part of the state this week. A committee in Coeur d'Alene Tuesday advanced an anti-discrimination ordinance. Meanwhile the sheriff of the same county is threatening to drop a Boy Scout charter because the group voted to allow gay members.

Last night, the cities of Twin Falls and Lewiston added clauses to protect employees from discrimination based on their sexual orientation. Unlike measures in Sandpoint and Boise that protect all residents, these policies apply only to city workers.

Frankie Barnhill / Boise State Public Radio

Idaho’s capitol city became the second community in the state to pass a nondiscrimination ordinance. Boise’s City Council voted unanimously Tuesday night to prohibit discrimination in housing, employment and public accommodations based on sexual orientation and gender identity. The ordinance takes effect on January first.

More than 150 people gave Boise’s City Council  a standing ovation after they approved the ordinance.