4
| LGBTQ |

Gay Rights Battle Heats Up in Doral With Mysterious Fliers, Public Hearing Tonight

^
Keep New Times Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Miami and help keep the future of New Times free.

Last month, when the City Council of Doral unanimously approved a plan to extend benefits to domestic partners of city employees -- becoming the seventh Miami-Dade County to do so -- the move was hailed by activists and city leaders.

But the council's decision has also sparked strong opposition. In the last few weeks, mailers have been bombarding the city excoriating the benefits plan and urging protest. "Marriage benefits = Married employees only! the fliers read. "The Doral City Council wants to force YOU to pay with your money for "marriage" benefits to all "domestic partners."

See also: What the Supreme Court's Move on Gay Marriage Means for Florida

The fight will come to a head tonight at Doral City Hall, where a hearing on gay marriage will be open to the public.

After the initial benefits plan was passed, Doral's city manager ruled the city needs an actual ordinance in order to extend the benefits, says Maria Barth, deputy director of the pro-benefits group SAVE Dade.

The issue will be brought up in a public hearing as part of the city's 6 p.m. council meeting. Barth is urging supporters to attend.

"This is a great opportunity for a city like Doral ... to really move forward on this and to really show its constituents that they're on the side of inclusion," she says.

Tony Lima, executive director of SAVE Dade, adds that the opposition campaign was not unexpected. "We've seen it all across the country," Lima said in a statement provided to Riptide. "Small but loud groups of opponents of human rights picketing ... to express their refusal to consider gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender people as human beings ...The good news is the strategy doesn't work."

So who's behind the sudden anti-gay right's push in Doral?

Barth, at least, believes it's the Christian Family Coalition, a group that has frequently advocated against gay rights -- including yesterday at the Miami-Dade County Commission. CFC's leaders didn't return a call from Riptide to comment.

Send your tips to trevor.bach@miaminewtimes.com, or follow @trevorbach.

Follow Miami New Times on Facebook and Twitter @MiamiNewTimes.

Keep Miami New Times Free... Since we started Miami New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Miami, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Miami with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.

 

Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Miami.

 

Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Miami.