Oakland County non-discrimination policy bolsters opportunity, quality of life

Oakland County Executive administration and the Board of Commissioners collaborated to adopt the county’s first comprehensive non-discrimination policy.

Miscellaneous Resolution 19250, approved by the Board of Commissioners on Nov. 20 and signed into law Tuesday by County Executive David Coulter, expands county policies to include protections for gender identity and expression, veteran status, familial status, and marital status in relation to employment, recruitment, procurement, contracting, and the delivery of services.

“Oakland County is adopting policies that have already been considered best practices in corporate America,” Coulter said during the signing ceremony at Affirmations in Ferndale. “Ensuring the success and diversity of Oakland County’s residents and businesses will spur economic growth and opportunity and improve the quality of life for everyone.”

The resolution aligns Oakland County with State of Michigan non-discrimination polices. Plus, it adds the county to the list of hundreds of state, county, and local governments that have implemented similar policies.

“If America stands for anything, it’s equal opportunity for all. We started this year determined to expand equality for everyone, and we achieved this goal by the board adopting Oakland County’s first comprehensive anti-discrimination policy,” said Board Chairman David T. Woodward. “All people should be treated fairly and equally, and this policy implements these values while being very clear we expect businesses that benefit from taxpayer funds to be held to the same standard.”

County Commissioner Penny Luebs from Clawson, who co-sponsored the resolution, wants Oakland County to be a welcoming county.

“When all people are treated as equal, we’re all better off, and our communities are stronger. As a former mayor, this is very important to me,” said Luebs, who led the initiative. “This new policy ensures that all are protected, all are valued, and affirms that Oakland County is a welcoming place for everyone.”

The resolution will not impact grants for cities, villages, and townships in Oakland County. The new policy takes effect Feb. 24, 2020.

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