The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that Missourians for Equality director Aaron Malin says he believes the state Legislature is far more conservative than Missourians in general, so they feel the best chance for passage of the measure is by the people.
Democratic state lawmakers have proposed similar legislation for more than a decade, but the bills have never made it to a floor vote.
There is no word on whether the bill would target employment opportunities, or be a broad bill including marriage discrimination. Currently in Missouri, discrimination in housing and employment is illegal based on race, religion, national origin, gender, age and disability. Legal experts say that while it also is illegal to discriminate against transgender people in Missouri, the law doesn’t prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation.
The effort must still pass several administrative hurdles with the Missouri Secretary of State’s office before supporters can begin collecting signatures.
The goal is to get the issue before voters in 2014. 150,000 signatures are needed for the ballot measure to be considered.