Missourians for Equality starts campaign to put measure on ballot that supports LGBT community

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - A group says it wants to end lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender inequality in Missouri. "Missourians for Equality" is starting a campaign to put a measure on your ballot.

The petition asks voters to approve changes to Missouri's non-discrimination policy to include freedom of sexual orientation and gender identity.

"Currently, you can be fired and evicted and the landlord could use the reason ‘because your gay,'" Missourians for Equality Executive Director and co-founder Aaron Malin said. "We think that's wrong. We think that puts an entire demographic of individuals at a social disadvantage if they are not secure in their housing or employment. About sixteen states have already adopted similar measures."

The petition is currently sitting on the Missouri Secretary of State's desk. If that office approves the measure, the group will need 150,000 signatures to push the measure onto the ballot.

That means voters in Missouri could vote on the issue by November 2014.

"On Election Day, four states voted in favor of LGBT equality," Malin said. "Missouri should take the steps toward equality immediately."

Andrea Hewitt is the Kansas City regional coordinator with Missourians for Equality. She hopes people show their acceptance for the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender (or LGBT) community by voting for this measure.

"We realize that a lot of our campaign is being carried by the younger generation who see this discrimination based on gender and sexual orientation as incomprehensible and we want to see that changed immediately," Hewitt said. "We are looking for acceptance, and we hope those on both sides of the political spectrum will agree with us and vote for it."

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