Efforts To Repeal San Antonio's LGBT Non-Discrimination Ordinance Fails

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The drive to repeal San Antonio's recently passed LGBT non-discrimination ordinance has failed.

Those opposed to the NDO had 40 days to collect over 60,000 signatures. These were the number of signatures required in order to place the ordinance on a citywide ballot in 2015. They failed to do so.

San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro responded immediately after the petition failed:

“I'm glad people can move on from divisive attempts to undo an ordinance that was always commonsense about treating everybody the same,” Castro said.

The hotly debated ordinance gained national attention after a secret recording of City Councilwoman Elisa Chan was released with very homophobic and transphobic remarks. This was also one of Castro's largest priorities since his DNC speech last year. Many wanted to see the rising national figure in action.

Read more about the ordinance below the jump.The ordinance grants LGBT people equal protection under the law as enjoyed by everyone else. Before this, San Antonio was previously only major city in Texas that did not include protections for their LGBT residents in the municipal rulebook.

San Antonio's LGBT-right group, Community Alliance for a United San Antonio (CAUSA), co-chair Dan Graney made the following statement in a release delivered before the petition deadline.

“We consider this effort a huge waste of personnel, time and money by those who are motivated solely by hatred and bigotry against LGBT people in our city,” said Graney. “The vast majority of Council members voted for the NDO and over 70 percent of San Antonio voters support LGBT protections in the workplace and in housing.  Moreover, this is something that is policy in over 180 cities across the country and in 96 percent of Fortune 500 companies.”

The effort to repeal the ordinance was spearheaded by Pastor Gerald Ripley, an original critic of the NDO.

“We did not collect the 61,045 signatures that we needed,” Ripley said.

Those 60,000 signatures represent 10 percent of eligible city voters, quota required to force a referendum.

“The next step is 2015 and the city elections,” Ripley said. “We will go to the 2015 election and find council representatives who will vote according to the will of the people.”

City Attorney Michael Bernard said the city will continue to defend the ordinance.


About Author

Omar Araiza

Staff writer Omar Araiza covers immigration, Latino voters, the U.S.-Mexico border, and LGBT issues. He is a proud South Texas native, born and raised in the lower Rio Grande Valley. Omar tweets from @AraizaTX.

1 Comment

  1. ProgressiveInTexas on

    …(no Catholic churches participated in the campaign)…
    What is the definition of “participated”?  Two weeks ago, at the Traffic Signal for the intersection of Blanco and Ramsey, people (without proper safety vests) were in the street soliciting drivers to to pull into HOLY SPIRIT CATHOLIC CHURCH Parking lot to sign the petitions.  If Holy Spirit allowed their TAX EXEMPT property to be used, in my opinion, they participated.

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