In response to a recent incident, social activists will be holding a rally and march in support of the LGBT community Monday.
Late last month, homophobic remarks were spray painted on a woman’s truck and garage in Berea.
Michael Stotts, a deputy with the Madison County Sheriff’s Office, said the case is still open. The case is being investigated as criminal mischief for the time being.
The rally will take place Monday 5 p.m. on the lawn of Union Church, 200 Prospect Street. Participants will then march to the Berea Human Rights Commission meeting at the Broadway Center. That meeting at 204 N. Broadway will begin at 6:30 p.m.
The rally is being organized by Bereans for Fairness, a grassroots organization dedicated to advancing equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Bereans and Kentuckians, and the Madison County Chapter of Kentuckians For The Commonwealth. Organizers of the rally and march hope it causes the Berea Human Rights Commission and the city council to address the incident.
“This is not the Berea we know and love,” said Meta Mendel-Reyes, a Berea College professor and social justice activist, in a news release. “The incident highlights the continued need for LGBT protections in our community, including an anti-discrimination fairness ordinance and hate crimes protections. We feel it’s time to stand up for our Berea, the inclusive and welcoming community we love.”
LGBTQ and civil rights in Berea has been an issue in Berea in recent years. In 2011, the city voted to create a human rights commission, which investigate claims of religious, racial, sex, age and physical-disability discrimination in the workplace, housing and public accommodations. The city council has previously discussed a fairness ordinance, but it was rejected in 2014 by a vote of 5 to 3.