I just learned that the Borough of Swissvale passed a comprehensive human relations act that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, gender expression, and gender identity on January 4, 2023.
Ordinance #23-01 to add a Chapter to the Code of Ordinances to provide for the creation of the Swissvale Human Relations Commission and to prohibit discrimination in housing, commercial property, employment and public accommodations based upon actual or perceived race, color, national origin, ancestry, religious creed, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, veteran’s status, marital status, familial status, genetic information, handicap or disability, or use of an assistance animal; providing definitions; and providing penalties and remedies for violations of the Ordinance.
Swissvale is now accepting applications to serve on the Human Relations Commission.
The Ordinance also provides for the creation of the Swissvale Borough Human Relations Commission (HRC) which will review cases of alleged discrimination and adjudicate said claims. The HRC will have the authority to levy fines against those they find guilty of discrimination.
Council is seeking residents and business owners interested in hearing potential cases of discrimination in the borough to serve on the Swissvale Human Relations Commission. Five members will be appointed to the commission and will meet as needed to review, discuss and adjudicate allegations of discrimination. Initial terms will be for one, two or three years. Renewal terms will be for three years.
The deadline for all applications will be March 31, 2023. Interested residents and business owners should send a letter of interest and resume via email to the Borough Manager or drop off physical documents at 7600 Evans Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15218.
Until May 2022, the Pennsylvania Youth Conference had been tracking all of these municipal ordinances. This list (minus Swissvale) is entirely to their credit. I’m unsure if they will update. I don’t always learn about these right away, obviously, so if you are aware of any momentum in your own Pennsylvania community, please let me know. I will create a more permanent page.
When this happens, we need to promote, promote, promote. Our community deserves all the good news it can get. And people can’t avail themselves of civil rights that they don’t know about.
- Abington Township (April 12, 2012)
- Allegheny County (July 1, 2009)
- City of Allentown (April 4, 2002)
- Ambler Borough (May 17, 2016)
- City of Bethlehem (July 1, 2011)
- Bloomsburg Town (October 26, 2020)
- Bridgeport Borough (April 24, 2018)
- Bristol Borough (September 9, 2013)
- Camp Hill Borough (May 10, 2017)
- Carlisle Borough (December 8, 2016)
- Cheltenham Township (February 15, 2012)
- Conshohocken Borough (April 21, 2011)
- Crafton Borough (November 23, 2020)
- Dickson City Borough (June 14, 2016)
- Dormont Borough (October 5, 2021)
- Downingtown Borough (March 19, 2014)
- Doylestown Borough (August 16, 2010)
- City of Easton (July 12, 2006)
- East Norriton Township (July 24, 2012)
- Erie County (February 26, 2002)
- Etna Borough (November 17, 2020)
- Gettysburg Borough (December 14, 2020)
- City of Harrisburg (1983)
- Hatboro Borough (May 21, 2018)
- Haverford Township (February 14, 2011)
- Huntingdon Borough (December 17, 2019)
- Jenkintown Borough (November 28, 2011)
- Kennett Square Borough (March 6, 2017)
- City of Lancaster (November 27, 2001)
- Lansdale Borough (August 15, 2018)
- Lansdowne Borough (March 15, 2006)
- Lower Gwynedd Township (May 10, 2022)
- Lower Merion Township (December 8, 2010)
- Middletown Township (September 8, 2020)
- City of Monessen (January 12, 2021)
- Montgomery Township (October 26, 2020)
- Mt. Lebanon Township (November 14, 2017)
- Narberth Borough (June 21, 2017)
- Newtown Borough (October 11, 2011)
- Newtown Township (November 28, 2018)
- New Hope Borough (September 10, 2002)
- Norristown Borough (July 3, 2018)
- North Wales Borough (October 22, 2019)
- City of Philadelphia (SO: August 5, 1982/GI: May 16, 2002)
- Phoenixville Borough (March 15, 2017)
- City of Pittsburgh (SO: April 3, 1990/GI: February 7, 1997)
- City of Pittston (May 28, 2013)
- Plymouth Township (April 9, 2018)
- City of Reading (September 28, 2009)
- Ross Township (September 17, 2018)
- Royersford Borough (March 28, 2017)
- City of Scranton (December 8, 2003)
- Sharpsburg Borough (December 17, 2020)
- Shippensburg Borough (September 1, 2020)
- Springfield Township (September 14, 2011)
- State College Borough (December 17, 2007)
- Stroudsburg Borough (April 18, 2017)
- Susquehanna Township (December 8, 2011)
- Swarthmore Borough (March 13, 2006)
- Swissvale Borough (January 4, 2023)
- Upper Dublin Township (September 12, 2017)
- Upper Gwynedd Township (September 14, 2020)
- Upper Merion Township (October 18, 2012)
- Upper Moreland Township (April 1, 2019)
- West Chester Borough (September 20, 2006)
- West Conshohocken Borough (July 10, 2018)
- West Norriton Township (August 14, 2018)
- Whitemarsh Township (November 17, 2011)
- Whitpain Township (September 15, 2020)
- City of Wilkes-Barre (September 15, 2016)
- Yardley Borough (March 6, 2018)
- City of York (September 15, 1998)
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