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Iowa official to resign if antidiscrimination ordinance fails

Iowa official to resign if antidiscrimination ordinance fails

A human rights commissioner in Bettendorf, Iowa, said he plans to resign if officials again vote down a civil rights ordinance protecting sexual orientation. Commissioner Bob Nakamaru was one of two members who voted in favor of listing sexual orientation as a protected attribute in the city's civil rights ordinance. The amendment failed when three other commissioners voted against it last month. Nakamaru said he plans to bring up the issue again next month and will resign if it fails a second time. Commissioners who opposed the measure said they did not want a city ordinance to surpass state law; the state does not include gays and lesbians in its antidiscrimination laws. Supporters noted that cities such as Davenport, Iowa City, and Cedar Rapids have passed local laws to prevent discrimination based on sexual orientation. The issue was brought up two years ago when residents of the eastern Iowa city said they were being discriminated against because of their sexual orientation.

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