Right step toward fairness in Versailles

Congratulations to Versailles for putting itself on track to become the ninth local government in Kentucky to ban discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or identity.

Mayor Brian Traugott set the wheels in motion this week by asking a council committee to begin researching and drafting a fairness ordinance.

Speaking to the council, Peggy Carter Seal, a member of the Versailles-Midway-Woodford County Human Rights Commission's fairness committee, made a good point.

Just because elected officials are not hearing complaints about discrimination against gay and transgender citizens does not mean it's not happening.

Victims of discrimination "tend not to report at all when they know that nothing can be done," she explained. Without the law's protection, complaining about such discrimination leaves the individual "extremely vulnerable and perhaps open to retaliation."

We would add that having a fairness ordinance — and the public discussion leading up to its adoption — raises awareness and reduces the chances of discrimination by landlords, employers and businesses.

It also sends a positive message about the kind of place a community wants to be.