Written by: SAMANTHA ROSENTHAL
Sarasota – On Nov. 3, the City of Sarasota unanimously approved on the first reading changes to the city’s anti-discrimination law which would add rights and protections for transgender individuals.
City Commissioner Suzanne Atwell originally made a motion Sept. 2 to vote to move forward with working on a draft because the law already has protections for sexual orientation, which were added in 2000. Her motion was unanimously approved for the city attorney to draft an amendment that same day.
Ken Shelin, Equality Florida Board Chair, and Gina Duncan, Transgender Inclusion Director for Equality Florida, presented to the Sarasota City Commission a proposal to amend the anti-discrimination law to include gender identity and gender expression at the September meeting. Shelin, who is also a former Sarasota City Commissioner and Vice Mayor, is leading the initiative.