Proclamations deemed to be violating the broader range of the Human Rights Code will not be proclaimed in Williams Lake.
The City’s proclamation policy will now include the broader range of discrimination under section 8.
Mayor Walt Cobb says the City previously never had a policy and that it would always be up to staff to bring it forward to Council leaving Council to deal with it in different ways.
“This allows us to pick okay if you’re an organization that is pro-this or anti-this we have the right to refuse it under those conditions,” Cobb says.
“So it just gives a little clearer message as to what we will accept as a proclamation so if it is turned down then we have a reason to say well this is why or if it’s allowed.”
Section 8 of the B.C. Human Rights Code prohibits discrimination against a person or class of persons based on race, colour, ancestry, place of origin, religion, marital status, family status, physical or mental disability, sex, sexual orientation or age of that person or class of persons, gender expression or gender identity.
Cobb says it is the hope that the addition of the broader range of discrimination under the Human Rights Code will prevent such controversy as in 2014 when the City had proclaimed ‘Celebrate Life Week.’ The proclamation was argued by local pro-choice activist Carrie Julius to have violated women’s rights.