Buncombe commissioners fail to amend personnel policy with equality protection

Jason Sandford

Jason Sandford is a reporter, writer, blogger and photographer interested in all things Asheville.

  • 1

Buncombe County commissioners on Tuesday night voted against a proposal by Commissioner Holly Jones to amend the county’s personnel policy and add the protection from discrimination based on sexual orientation.

Jones brought up her amendment at tonight’s meeting, during which the board discussed other personnel policy amendments. Her motion failed 3-2. Board chairman David Gantt voted with Jones for it, while commissioners Bill Stanley, K. Ray Bailey and Carol Peterson voted against.

Jones has been persistent in her questioning of county personnel policies, including county pay plans for employees and county pay for commissioners. Mountain Xpress has background here. And here’s a few tweets from Xpress reporter Jake Frankel, who covered the meeting:

Aaron Sarver notes that without change, a county employee can be legally fired for no other reason than they’re gay.

Stanley fires back that the county doesn’t fire people because they’re gay. Sarver: that’s great, but we need legal protection

Jones makes motion to add gender/orientation to personnel policy. Gantt seconds.

However, Peterson requests more info on legal ramifications. Bailey wants to know about cost. Board goes in to closed session.

Commish back from closed session. Jones says this “is very important civil rights issue.”

Jones: I don’t see any legal or financial issues that should keep us from amending policy.

Amending county personnel ordinance to include orientation/gender protection fails 3-2. Jones and Gantt vote in minority

Image link for Holly Jones.

Jason Sandford

Jason Sandford is a reporter, writer, blogger and photographer interested in all things Asheville.

  • 1

You Might also Like


  1. Christian August 18, 2012

    Murphy is incorrect. There are 29 states in which individuals can be fired for no other reason than for identifying as LGBT. This happened to me about ten years ago when I was a senior in high school. I worked at a pretzel kiosk in a North Dakota mall. I was a very good worker; always showed up, never late. My manager was a holy-roller type, and she instructed one of the shift supervisors to fire me. I found out from that same supervisor that I was fired for being gay. It can and does happen. It’s no skin off my nose at this point in time, but legal protections (i.e. ENDA) are definitely needed for LGBT people.

  2. Sarah August 8, 2012

    any word on whether they passed the proposal for ammended benefits/longevity pay/PTO stuff for county employees?

  3. Murphy August 8, 2012

    There is already a Federal law which makes sexual discrimination illegal.

    1. Del August 10, 2012

      This statement is incorrect. ENDA is a bill that would make a federal law barring sexual identity discrimination in the workplace, however since it was first introduced to Congress in 1994, it has yet to pass.



Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Related Stories