New Columbus Pride Policy: Parade entrants must protect LGBTQ employees

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COLUMBUS, Ohio -- The Columbus Pride Parade and Festival is one of the city's biggest annual events, drawing more than half a million people.

But this year, the people taking part in the Pride Parade will have a new requirement.

Any organization or business applying to walk in the parade must have an anti-discrimination policy protecting LGBTQ employees.

Stonewall Columbus says the change is necessary because there is no state or federal law prohibiting discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity.

The group hopes the change will inspire local businesses that don't already have such a policy to adopt one.

"I think it's really important," said Stonewall Columbus Executive Director Karla Rothan. "Because the parade is just one day, but these people who work for these organizations and corporations, they work there all year long. So really it's a safety measure for them. And also we're asking them if you want to get out in front of the community and you want to be with us for one day, we want you to walk the walk all year long with us."

Stonewall says it is willing to work with local businesses to help establish this policy.

The City of Columbus is one of 16 Ohio cities that has passed non-discrimination laws.

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