Las Vegas Sun

August 21, 2014

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Assembly panel advances gay discrimination bill

CARSON CITY – An Assembly committee has unanimously approved a bill making it illegal to discriminate against gays and lesbians in public accommodations.

Senate Bill 207 was approved in the Senate 19-2 and now goes to the floor of the Assembly for a final vote.

It authorizes a person who believes he has been discriminated because of his sexual orientation to file a complaint with the state Equal Rights Commission.

The vote came in the Assembly Committee of Commerce and Labor.

The committee declined to amend the bill to include and spell out discrimination protections to transgender persons. Spokesmen for this group urged the committee to make the bill more inclusive.

They talked of a case in Las Vegas where a military veteran was denied access to a homeless shelter because he was transgender.

Sen. David Parks, D-Las Vegas, called the approval by the committee “a very important move” because “Nevada is a state that sells itself on its openness and acceptance of all individuals and seeks to provide opportunity to persons who are lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender.”

He said he will sponsor legislation in 2009 to get the same protections for transgender individuals that are provided in the bill passed by the committee Friday.

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