LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — A legislator is proposing expanding Arkansas’ anti-discrimination protections to include sexual orientation and gender identity after a new law prohibits local ordinances from going beyond what’s spelled out in state law.
Democratic Rep. Greg Leding of Fayetteville on Monday proposed adding the protections to state law addressing discrimination in employment, housing and public accommodations.
The state law currently includes race, religion, national origin, gender and disability.
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The move comes after legislation became law barring cities and counties from enacting ordinances that prohibit discrimination on a basis not contained in state law. The measure was in response to a now-repealed Fayetteville ordinance that included protections based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
Opponents of the state law said it sanctioned discrimination against the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.
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