Anchorage Assembly Chair Felix Rivera has introduced a resolution to have the city officially acknowledge June as time to celebrate “lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender communities.”
Co-sponsored by Assemblyman Christopher Constant, the measure claims that LGBTQ activism is part of the nation’s “long struggle to realize the great American promise of equality under the law, and equality of opportunity in our society that still eludes too many individuals in our city and nation.”
It ends with a call to “advance the struggle to achieve equity and justice for all segments of our community.”
The resolution, however, will be introduced at the same meeting (June 8) where the annual Anchorage Equal Rights Commission report will be delivered. This latest report reveals that allegations of LGBTQ discrimination are virtually non-existent in Alaska’s largest city.
The Equal Rights Commission is a 10-member board charged with preventing and eliminating unlawful discrimination in Anchorage. The group investigates complaints based on race, color, religion, national origin, age, sex, pregnancy, parenthood, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, physical and mental disability and retaliation. These complaints come in the form of employment, housing, public accommodations, educational and financial institutions and practices of the Municipality of Anchorage.
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According to the latest data, nearly every area of alleged discrimination has drastically dropped.
In 2020, new complaints about discrimination were just 82. That’s down from 130 in 2019. Additionally, complaints based on sexual orientation or gender identity amount to only four total allegations. That’s tied with marital status and religious discrimination for the fewest number of complaints.
More commonly, people complained about discrimination based on race (32 instances), physical or mental disability (28), age (13) and national origin (7) – all of which were at their lowest numbers since 2016. Even these cases, however, do not all represent different instances, as many complaints were filed by the same person alleging more than one basis for why they feel they were discriminated against.