The Omaha City Council has approved an ordinance banning discrimination in the workplace and all public places against gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender individuals.
Councilman Ben Gray sponsored the ordinance. It passed on a city council vote of four to three. The vote came one week after a three-hour public hearing, where supporters and opponents made their case as to why the ordinance should, or shouldn’t, pass.
Councilman Pete Festersen, Garry Gernandt, Ben Gray, and Chris Jerram voted in favor of the ordinance. Councilmen Franklin Thompson, Tom Mulligan, and Councilwoman Jean Stothert opposed it.
The ordinance exempts religious institutions, and organizations run all or in part by religious groups.
Omaha Mayor Jim Suttle issued a statement Tuesday afternoon praising the City Council for passing the ordinance. Suttle says the vote shows Omaha embraces diversity and welcomes everyone.