Upper Darby to extend LGBT workplace protections

Upper Darby Mayor Thomas N. Micozzie said he will ask the township council this week to introduce an ordinance extending LGBT workplace protections to all 450 township employees.

Micozzie will make the request during a July 10 council meeting that’s open to the public. He said about 110 “office professionals” already have LGBT protections in their labor-union contract. The proposed ordinance would extend those protections to the remaining 340 township employees, including police officers, fire fighters, highway personnel and sanitation workers, he said.

“I’m optimistic it’s going to happen because I’ve spoken to other council people and they’re supportive,” Micozzie told PGN. “It’s also the right thing to do. There should be no discrimination against anyone. Everyone should be treated equally. This process ensures that becomes a reality.”

The proposed ordinance will amend the township’s administrative code. It’s expected to be introduced at a July 17 council meeting during which members of the public can offer comments. Then it’s expected to come up for a final vote during the Aug. 21 council meeting, said Thomas J. Judge Jr., the township’s chief administrative officer.

“I do not envision any problems that will surface because of this language change,” Judge told PGN.

Judge also said there are no current plans to enact a comprehensive LGBT antibias ordinance that would cover additional categories such as housing, education and public accommodations.

“We’re taking one step at a time and addressing the issues as they come forward,” he said.

Upper Darby has about 82,000 residents. The township is the sixth-largest municipality in the state. It’s located in Delaware County, just west of Philadelphia.