About 25 local faith leaders and several Asheville City Council members gathered today, Jan. 25, at the First Congregational United Church of Christ to advocate for “full equality for all Asheville citizens.” The resolution pushed by the faith leaders — representing a variety of traditions — calls for City Council to take four specific actions, including “extending the city’s employment non-discrimination clause to include sexual orientation, gender, and gender identity or expression.”
Photo by Jonathan Welch
At a press conference this morning, an interfaith group of more than two dozen local religious leaders issued a “statement of appreciation” backing Asheville City Council’s recent vote in support of establishing same-sex domestic-partner benefits for city employees.
Mayor Terry Bellamy, along with City Manager Gary Jackson, appeared on the Conversations radio show on WCQS last night. Bellamy defended her controversial vote against same-sex domestic-partnership benefits and said that the issue was a way for Council member Gordon Smith to boost his own chances at a future mayoral run.
A 1994 adoption of an anti-discrimination policy in Asheville drew fire from those saying the City Council was endorsing homosexuality.
In the aftermath of last night’s Council vote to support same-sex domestic-partner benefits for city employees, four local Baptist ministers held a press conference today to voice their displeasure, while saying they still welcome homosexuals into their congregations
In her last campaign, Mayor Terry Bellamy avoided taking a position for or against same-sex domestic-partner benefits for city employees. At last night’s Asheville City Council meeting, she left little doubt to where she stood, stating her opposition to such benefits and voting against pursuing them. Does Bellamy’s vote help or harm your opinion of the mayor?
City Council votes 4-2 to support benefits “in concept” and instruct city staff to research a potential ordinance.