BECKLEY, WV (WVNS)– Friday, Jan., 22, 2021 marked two years since the City of Beckley passed their non-discrimination ordinance.
Rob Rappold is the Mayor of Beckley. He said when this ordinance was passed he was very proud about the amount of people who came out to voice their opinions.
“It adds the LGBTQ to protection against housing discrimination and hiring discrimination and it is an ordinance that I am personally very proud of,” Rappold said.
Mayor Rappold said it was important to add LGTBQ groups to the ordinance to make sure everyone in the town felt included. Christina Baisben is the president of Beckley Pride. She said it wasn’t easy, but she continued to fight for what was right.
“We had a group of over 500 people assisting us with this fight locally and even outside of our city, just trying to let people understand where we were coming from as part of the LGBTQ community what this means for us and what this means for the city,” Baisben stated.
Danielle Stewart is on the chair of the Beckley Human Rights Commission and is a part of the LGTBQ community herself. She said the ordinance is extremely important still to this day.
“So, when the ordinance was proposed and through all of the things that Christina did to court people. And now all of the sudden, we now have this community of people that were now previously in hiding, but now feel good, they feel good, they feel safe now in Beckley. And this is where they want to be. And having that community is just awesome,” Stewart said.