About Equal Rights Houston
We are Houstonians first – and we all deserve to be treated that way.
Black Houstonians, Disabled Houstonians, LGBT Houstonians, Hispanic Houstonians, Asian Houstonians, Houstonians from anywhere. We’re Houstonians – and we deserve the dignity, respect and honor that proud name carries.
That’s why our mayor and city council have joined with a broad coalition of businesses, faith leaders, community organizations, teachers, medical professionals, elected leaders and neighbors across Houston to update and modernize Houston’s nondiscrimination law.
“Houston is a city that doesn’t discriminate. We welcome all who want to live and work in Houston and help make this city one of the world’s truly great cities. The proposed Equal Rights Ordinance simply makes clear that businesses in Houston do not and will not discriminate.” - Bob Harvey, President and CEO of the Greater Houston Partnership, Houston's leading business organization
On May 28, 2014, Mayor Annise Parker and the Houston City Council passed the Houston Equal Rights Ordinance – a law that protects all of us from discrimination. (Click here to read the ordinance.)
The Houston Equal Rights Ordinance – often called HERO – modernizes our laws and strikes a balance. It provides a quick and inexpensive local tool to protect hard-working employees from being fired or discriminated against by a boss or manager who doesn’t do the right thing. And it lets small businesses hold all employees to the same professional standards.
Now, opponents of the law have threatened to overturn these protections at the ballot box. That’s just plain wrong – and Equal Rights Houston was formed to stop them.
Opponents submitted a petition to force a referendum. On August 4, the City of Houston ruled their petition invalid. Opponents are bringing an action in court to overturn the city’s decision and put the issue on the ballot.
The Equal Rights Houston campaign will defend against any attempts, whether in the courts or at the ballot box, to overturn the basic, common sense protections the Houston Equal Rights Ordinance provides to all who live and work in our great city.
Houstonians should not have to live in fear that they can be fired for reasons that have nothing to do with their job performance. Houstonians should not worry that they will be turned away from public places or be denied service in a restaurant because of who they are. We are better than that as Houstonians and as Texans. Ft. Worth, Dallas and San Antonio have successfully modernized their nondiscrimination laws, protecting all their residents, without creating problems. If it can work there, it can work here in Houston.
We love Houston. In Houston, we strive to treat people fairly and equally. We want Houston to be a place where everyone can work hard, provide for our families and give our kids the opportunity for a better life.
To learn more about the ordinance, visit www.houequality.com.