Arkansas court to hear arguments over LGBT protections

     (AP) – Arkansas’ highest court will hear arguments next month

in a legal battle over whether a whether a city’s ban on discrimination based on

sexual orientation and gender identity conflicts with a state law aimed at

blocking local protections for gays and lesbians.

     The state Supreme Court on Wednesday said it will hold oral arguments Feb. 2

in the state’s appeal of a Washington County judge’s decision upholding

Fayetteville’s anti-discrimination ordinance. The judge last year ruled the

ordinance doesn’t run afoul of a state law barring cities and counties from

prohibiting discrimination on a basis not contained in state law.

     Arkansas’ civil rights law doesn’t include sexual orientation or gender

identity. But supporters of the ordinance have noted other parts of Arkansas law

include protections for LGBT people.


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