Sarasota News Leader

11/01/2013

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ONE DOWN, FOUR TO GO County Commission Chairwoman Carolyn Mason prepares for a board meeting to start. File photo COUNTY COMMISSION CHAIRWOMAN SAYS SHE WILL ENDORSE A HUMAN RIGHTS AMENDMENT TO PROTECT GAYS AND LESBIANS By Cooper Levey-Baker Associate Editor At least one county commissioner is now on board with a proposal for an ordinance that would bar discrimination against gays and lesbians in housing and employment: Carolyn Mason. gender identity. So cities and counties around the Sunshine State have crafted their own so-called human rights ordinances, which protect against discrimination based on the categories above, as well as sexual orientation, gender identity and more. The cities of Florida Statute 760, which covers civil rights, Sarasota and Venice both offer such protecspecifically prevents tions, but the county discrimination on has so far declined to I can talk a long time about take them up. the basis of "race, color, religion, sex, discrimination, having grown up here in But that may be national origin, age, the '50s. changing. County handicap, or marital Carolyn Mason Commission Chair– status," but it leaves Chairwoman Sarasota County Commission woman Carolyn out categories such as Mason tells The sexual orientation and

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