MICHIGAN: Activists File For 2016 LGBT Rights Vote

Michigan activists yesterday filed the paperwork to place a broad LGBT anti-discrimination constitutional amendment to a public vote in November 2016. The Detroit Free Press reports:

Dana Nessel, the Michigan attorney who took the same-sex marriage case all the way to the Supreme Court, is leader of Fair Michigan, which hopes to begin gathering petition signatures for the ballot proposal early next year. “We would just be adding different classes of people to the constitution who aren’t getting protection now,” she said, including gender, gender identity, sex and sexual orientation, which will cover both women and the LGBT community. “The fact is that the Michigan Legislature has ignored efforts to protect people, so it’s time we gave Michigan voters the power,” she added. Gov. Rick Snyder and many in the business community have called on the Legislature to add the LGBT community to the Elliott Larsen Civil Rights Act, which prohibits discrimination in hiring and housing, but the issue never even made it out of a legislative committee.

In the next step the group will submit the measure’s language to the Michigan secretary of state. Upon approval, they must then collect about 316,000 petition signatures by the deadline. Nessel was the attorney for April DeBoer and Jayne Rowse. DeBoer V Snyder was of one of the four consolidated cases that resulted in the Obergefell ruling.