Orlando passes gay rights bill

The Orlando, Fla., city council voted Monday night to ban discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. The ordinance, which passed 4-3, adds sexual orientation to the list of characteristics already protected by the city's antidiscrimination law, including race, national origin, religion, gender, disability, age, and marital status. The measure bans discrimination in employment, housing and public accommodations. Businesses with fewer than six employees, landlords with fewer than four units, churches, religious groups, and private clubs are exempt. Businesses found discriminating against gays, lesbians, or bisexuals could be fined $500 per violation. Eight other Florida cities and counties already extend antidiscrimination protections to gays and lesbians.

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