City Council Passes B 321-17

COLUMBIA, Mo. – The Columbia City Council took an important step today toward ensuring that communities remain respectful toward women and families. The council unanimously passed the NARAL Missouri-endorsed ordinance updating the city’s nondiscrimination protections to include pregnancy, childbirth and other related medical decisions regarding familial status, B321-17.

“In Missouri, we know we’re stronger when we pull with all our weight. Yet women across our state face the prospect of being discriminated against for their personal decisions about when and if they raise a family,” said Alison Dreith, Executive Director of NARAL Pro-Choice Missouri. “NARAL Missouri applauds the Columbia City Council and Mayor Treece for ensuring that hardworking women aren’t discriminated against in Columbia. NARAL will continue to work with city officials to make the city more welcoming for all families.”

“Today was a big step forward for protections for women in the workplace. Even within a hostile state environment, we can pass policy at the local level to codify the rights of families to make personal decisions about their reproductive health without the intrusion of their employers,” said Zach Rubin, Chair of the City of Columbia Commission on Human Rights.

B321-17 adds pregnancy, childbirth, and other related medical decisions to the list of protected classes from discrimination in employment in Columbia. The ordinance helps ensure that women and men can make their own reproductive health decisions, without fear of losing their jobs because of private, non-work related decisions. This includes the ability to determine whether, when, and how to raise a family. On October 26, 2016, the Columbia Commission on Human Rights submitted a letter to Mayor Treece and Councilmembers, in support of adding reproductive health decisions to the list of protected classes.