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A packed house speaks out during hearing about Tucker’s proposed nondiscrimination ordinance

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A packed house speaks out during hearing about Tucker’s proposed nondiscrimination ordinance

A May 8 public hearing about a nondiscrimination ordinance in Tucker resulted in a packed house at Tucker City Hall. Many attendees had to stand in the lobby. Photo by Dean Hesse.

Tucker, GA — A discussion about a proposed nondiscrimination audience packed the house during a May 8 public hearing at Tucker City Hall.

More than 100 people attended the event, with attendees spilling out into the lobby.

Speakers both for and against the ordinance dominated public comment. Public comments lasted 50 minutes.

The ordinance, presented by Councilmember Virginia Rece, Councilmember Cara Schroeder, and Mayor Pro Tem Anne Lerner, has been discussed in Tucker since 2019 and was an issue in the 2021 mayoral election. The years-long effort has met with resistance, notably from Mayor Frank Auman.

Lerner announced an NDO working group back in April 2022, with members that included Lerner, Schroeder, and Rece. That came six months after Mayor Auman and city council members supported a resolution for an “inclusive, fair and welcoming city.” Supporters of the ordinance said that the resolution was not legally enforceable.

Tucker Open Door, a local civic group, has been placing pressure on the city to adopt the ordinance, which is similar to ordinances adopted in other cities like Doraville, Decatur, Clarkston, Chamblee, Dunwoody, and Brookhaven. Rehoboth Baptist Church emailed church members on May 5, encouraging them to attend the meeting to speak against the ordinance out of concern it would infringe on people’s religious freedom.

During the May 8 meeting, Mayor Auman pointed out that it was the first time that the city council had considered an ordinance written by council members and the first time that the city had considered a law regarding a social justice issue.

A second read and a vote will be held at a future meeting.

This developing story will be updated when more information is available.

Mayor Frank Auman looks on as Councilmember Anne Lerner gives background on the NDO. Photo by Dean Hesse.

First Christian Church of Atlanta Senior Pastor Rev. Tom Edmonson speaks in favor of passage of the NDO. Photo by Dean Hesse.

Rehoboth Baptist Church Pastor Troy Bush speaks out against the NDO. Photo by Dean Hesse.

People wearing stickers in support of the NDO listen to speakers during open comment. Photo by Dean Hesse.

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