FAYETTEVILLE (KFSM) — Unlike 2014, supporters of a civil rights ordinance in Fayetteville are not getting any financial backing from the Human Rights Campaign, a national organization based out of Washington, D.C., for their 2015 campaign.
In 2014, the HRC made $166,080-worth of non-money contributions to Keep Fayetteville Fair, a local group that worked to encourage voters to keep Ordinance 119. The ordinance was passed by the Fayetteville City Council and then repealed by voters in a special election that took place in December, 2014.
On its website, the HRC describes itself as the largest civil rights organization working to achieve equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Americans.
The new civil rights ordinance is also going before voters in a special election. On Sept. 8, Fayetteville residents will decide whether they want to enact the Uniform Civil Rights Protection Ordinance 5781. However, the HRC has not been involved in the For Fayetteville campaign supporting the ordinance.
HRC Arkansas State Director Kendra R. Johnson released the following statement explaining why:
“We highly respect and value the work being done by our partners to expand LGBT equality across Arkansas. While we can’t lend our support to the current version of Fayetteville’s proposed nondiscrimination ordinance because it stops short of full and equal protections for LGBT people, we fully plan to continue working with our friends and neighbors here on other efforts to bring about full equality for all LGBT Arkansans.”
For Fayetteville financial reports filed with the Arkansas Ethics Commission show the HRC has not made any contributions to the campaign.
The most recent financial report submitted Aug. 17 shows For Fayetteville has received $39,444 since May 30. Monetary contributions were made by several University of Arkansas employees and several employees at Walmart, including a director of communications. The biggest contribution listed was $10,000 from J.B. Hunt Chairman & CEO, Kirk Thompson.
According to the latest financial report filed Sept. 1 by Protect Fayetteville, a group that opposes the civil rights ordinance, the total of contributions made to the campaign was $70,291. The biggest contribution of $10,000 came from Baldwin Christian Church in Fayetteville.