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File #: 11599-20    Version: 1 Name:
Type: Ordinance Status: Enacted
File created: 9/4/2020 In control: Chief Clerk
On agenda: Final action: 10/20/2020
Title: An Ordinance amending the Allegheny County Code of Ordinances, Division 2, entitled "County Government Operations," Chapter 215, entitled "Boards, Commissions and Committees," Article V, entitled "Human Relations Commission," in order to clarify the applicability of existing Countywide nondiscrimination requirements in the context of discrimination based upon hairstyles.
Sponsors: Olivia Bennett, Anita Prizio, Bethany Hallam
Attachments: 1. 24-20-OR 11599-20.pdf
title
An Ordinance amending the Allegheny County Code of Ordinances, Division 2, entitled "County Government Operations," Chapter 215, entitled "Boards, Commissions and Committees," Article V, entitled "Human Relations Commission," in order to clarify the applicability of existing Countywide nondiscrimination requirements in the context of discrimination based upon hairstyles.

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WHEREAS, Allegheny County has had a longstanding policy against discrimination, and this policy is incorporated into the Administrative Code of Allegheny County insofar as it relates to County employment, contract, and other activities;

WHEREAS, in 2009, Allegheny County strengthened its commitment to opposing discrimination through the enactment of a human rights ordinance in order to govern discriminatory practices outside the structure of the County government; and

WHEREAS, the Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court and Supreme Court have both explicitly found that local antidiscrimination ordinances are not preempted by the terms of the Pennsylvania Human Relations Act, 43 P.S. §§951-953; and

WHEREAS, the Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court has explicitly found that local antidiscrimination ordinances are permissible exercises of local authority, and are not prohibited under the terms of the Home Rule Charter and Optional Plans Law, 53 P.S. §§2901-3171; and

WHEREAS, while the County's human relations ordinance, codified in Article V of Chapter 215 of the Allegheny County Code of Ordinances, was drafted to contain expansive definitions of discriminatory practices, certain practices involving the regulation of hairstyles have become more prevalent since the enactment of the ordinance which often function as de facto discrimination based on race, gender identity, national origin, or religion; and

WHEREAS, racial and national origin discrimination, for example, is often reflected in public education, housing, public accommodation, and/or workplace policies and practices that bar natur...

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