Arkansas Supreme Court Blocks Enforcement Of Fayetteville Anti-Discrimination Ordinance

Jan 31, 2019


Arkansas' highest court says a city can't enforce an ordinance banning discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity, saying it's already ruled the measure violates a state law aimed at preventing local protections for LGBT people.

The state Supreme Court on Thursday reversed a Washington County judge's decision to allow Fayetteville to continue enforcing its anti-discrimination ordinance while the city challenged the constitutionality of a 2015 law preventing cities and counties from enacting protections not covered by state law.

Arkansas' civil rights law doesn't cover sexual orientation or gender identity. The court in 2017 ruled the ordinance violated the state law.

Citing that decision, justices on Thursday reversed the judge's ruling and dismissed the case. The high court did not rule whether the state law is constitutional.