- Associated Press - Saturday, March 22, 2014

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) - Two years after Omaha adopted an ordinance aimed at protecting the workplace rights of gay and transgender employees, only a handful of complaints have been filed with the city’s Human Rights and Relationship Department.

City officials have not received many calls from business owners looking for help or clarification about the law, and they’re not aware of any lawsuits tied to the ordinance, The Omaha World-Herald reported Saturday (http://bit.ly/1jmOUNF ).

The Omaha City Council narrowly approved the ordinance in March 2012 that bans employers, job-training programs, labor groups and other organizations from discriminating based on a person’s sexual orientation. The measure included exemptions for religious organizations.

The ordinance also makes it illegal to refuse to offer services or to accommodate a person because of his or her sexual orientation or gender identity.

Some opponents of the ordinance had cautioned that the city could be in for a flood of complaints, but so far, the city has received five. Two of those have been dismissed for no cause, and three are pending, city officials said.

All of the complaints were related to employment - one from someone who was fired and the other who complained of harassment because of their sexual orientation or gender identity. In a third case, an employee said he or she was unfairly disciplined, and another pointed to unfair terms and conditions of employment.

The fifth case was classified as “constructive discharge.” That involves a claim of workplace conditions so unpleasant that the employee quit.


Information from: Omaha World-Herald, http://www.omaha.com



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