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Gay rights have FWay support

By ERICA HALL

The Mirror

The Religious Coalition for Equality and Equal Rights Washington will co-host a rally in Olympia Monday to lobby state legislators in support of anti-discrimination legislation that would add sexual orientation to the list of what can’t be used for discriminatory purposes.

Governor Christine Gregoire, who requested such legislation be brought forward again this year, will address the rally, as will state Rep. Ed Murray of Seattle), who sponsors the legislation annually.

This year’s House Bill 2661, sponsored by Murray and signed by fellow Democrat Rep. Mark Miloscia of Federal Way, would protect homosexual men and women from discrimination in housing, employment and insurance.

Last year’s legislation passed the House, but failed by one vote in the Senate. This year, Sen. Bill Finkbeiner of Kirkland) stepped down as the Republican’s Minority Leader and said he’d break with his party to vote in favor of the measure.

While religious leaders also are expected to voice their support for same-sex marriage rights Monday, state Sen. Tracey Eide (D-Federal Way) said legislation to allow same-sex marriage isn’t likely to come up this session.

Eide said she’ll continue to support anti-discrimination legislation.

“It’s absolutely horrible we’d turn someone away for housing, banking (or) employment. In my core and in my heart of hearts, discrimination is appalling,” she said. “I don’t care if you’re purple with white polka dots, you have a right to live in a house, have a job (and) get a loan.”

Staff writer Erica Hall: 925-5565, ehall@fedwaymirror.com

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