INDEPENDENCE, Mo. — The Independence City Council has rejected a proposal by the city's mayor to fly the rainbow flag at municipal buildings during LGBTQ pride month in June.
Mayor Eileen Weir said flying the flag would show the city values diversity and inclusion and would make LGBTQ people feel welcome and safe there.
The council voted 6-1 Monday against the proposal. Weir said it was the second time she proposed flying the rainbow flag, only to have the council reject it.
My proposal to display the Pride flag at all city facilities during #PrideMonth was defeated by a vote of 6-1 by the city council. I want all citizens, businesses & visitors to know I am not discouraged. You are valued. You are safe. You are welcomed. @CityOfIndepMO #Indep4all— Eileen Weir (@weirIndep4) April 6, 2021
Councilman Brice Stewart said he opposed flying any flag other than official government flags on city buildings.
And Councilman Michael Steinmeyer said he would prefer the city propose more substantive diversity and inclusion initiatives, rather than simply flying a pride flag.
Inoru Wade, vice president of the Kansas City Center for Inclusion, said gestures like flying the rainbow flag are important to let the LGBTQ community know it is welcome in Independence.
Weir, who displays the pride flag outside her office, said she will introduce the proposal again next year, as well as supporting other efforts to promote inclusion and diversity.