HB 5039, which was introduced by Rep. Tom McMillin on October 5, 2011 and was referred to the Judiciary Committee chaired by Rep. John Walsh would, in effect, legalize discrimination against students and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender persons in Michigan. It nullifies local control and representation.
This legislation would prohibit a state agency or unit of local government from adopting any ordinance, rule, regulation, or policy that includes, as a protected class, any classification not specifically included as a protected class under 1976 PA 453, entitled "Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act. This draconian legislation would eliminate protections for student-status, sexual orientation, and gender identity in Michigan cities such as Kalamazoo, East Lansing, and Ann Arbor. As it would legalize discrimination in housing, employment, and public accommodations, it could make life very challenging for many of our citizens, including students. It is clearly unconstitutional under the precedent set in Romer v. Evans.