Pro-equality resolution presented to Charlotte council

City Council members offer no official comment or response at meeting

by Matt Comer  Editor
Published: June 1, 2009 in News

CHARLOTTE — More than a dozen supporters of a local LGBT grassroots activism group attended a Charlotte City Council Citizens’ Forum meeting on June 1, as a pro-marriage equality resolution was presented to the council.

Joshua Lee Weaver, a Durham resident, traveled to the Queen City to present the resolution. It calls on the city council to “endorse and support the rights of same-sex couples to share fully and equally in the rights, responsibilities and commitments of civil marriage.”

The resolution states that “civil marriage for same-sex couples must include all the benefits commonly bestowed upon opposite-sex couples, including, among other rights, healthcare coverage and related decision-making, privileges under immigration and naturalization law, survivor benefits, inheritance rights, and child custody.”

Weaver had four minutes to present the resolution. He was the only speaker at the citizens’ meeting, following a city council planning session.

Immediately after Weaver presented the resolution, Mayor Pat McCrory adjourned the meeting. No city council members offered official comment on the document, although several remained after the meeting to speak with members of the Charlotte Rainbow Action Network for Equality (CRANE), who attended the meeting in support of Weaver’s resolution.

[Ed. Note -- This writer is an organizer with CRANE.]

At an Uptown rally and march on Friday and throughout the weekend, the group collected more than 200 signatures of citizens who supported the resolution.

It isn’t clear if the city will put the resolution on a business meeting agenda. CRANE organizers said they intended to meet with several city council members individually. Speaking with the group after the meeting, a few of the elected officials agreed to meet.

Mayor Pro Tem Susan Burgess and City Councilmember Anthony Foxx, the Democratic candidate for mayor, both urged against working to pass a simply symbollic resolution. They said passing inclusive non-discrimination policies and domestic partner benefits would be a better step forward for Charlotte’s LGBT community.

Be sure to pick up the June 13 Q-Notes print issue for more on this story.