Lawmakers to host panel discussion on Human Rights Act


A panel of experts will assemble at the statehouse on Wednesday afternoon to explain just how Idaho would benefit from adding the words “gender identity and sexual orientation” to its human rights act.

The panel will be hosted by Grant Burgoyne, D-Boise, and Sen. Cherie Buckner-Webb, D-Boise, who announced on Friday that they will be introducing the legislation at some point during this session.

Idaho’s LGBT community has been trying to gain a public hearing for the bill for the past seven years.  Despite positing hundreds of sticky notes from citizens across Idaho, as well as heavy turn out at rallies in 14 cities during a day of action, last January, GOP lawmakers once again told the community, “no”.

Wednesday’s hour long discussion, which is open to the public, features a list of heavy hitters who support the change. According to a facebook invite, the discussion will be facilitated by Dr. David Adler, Director of the Andrus Center for Public Policy.

Panelists include:

-Pam Parks, Executive Director, Idaho Commission on Human Rights
-Maryanne Jordan, Boise City Council President
-Reverend Marci Glass, Pastor, Southminster Presbyterian Church
-Kevin Settles, Idaho Business Owner
-John Reuter, former Sandpoint City Council President

Organizers are hoping that the informative event will give state lawmakers, and the public, the chance to educate themselves on the issue without all the hyperbole that typically surrounds the topic.

Burgoyne tells the Times-News, so far, “there’s no timeline for introduction for the legislation” this session.

What: A panel Discussion on the Human Rights Act

When: Wednesday from 12:00-1:00 PM

Where:  The Idaho Statehouse Auditorium and around the state LIVE on Idaho Public Television.

Who:  The public is invited to attend the event.

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