Tommy Hazouri trying again with the HRO this fall to protect LGBT residents, ‘send a message’

Tommy Hazouri

Jacksonville City Councilman Tommy Hazouri says the deadly mass shooting over the weekend in Orlando at the LGBT-friendly Pulse nightclub has only renewed his resolve to get a comprehensive human rights ordinance passed in the 904.

Hazouri withdrew the measure earlier this year when it became apparent it did not have a majority of council votes to pass.

Now, the former mayor tells he plans to push the HRO again “very shortly after” Jacksonville voters decide the pension referendum being touted by current Mayor Lenny Curry. That vote is set for Aug. 30.

“Today, my heart is heavy over too many mass murders stemmed from hatred and bigotry,” said Hazouri.

“Our fight for human rights, dignity and respect won’t be deterred by the horrific events that took place in Orlando. This tragedy should give every American the resolve to find tolerance and acceptance in their hearts. Lest we forget; that we are one nation, one city and one Jacksonville under God — with liberty and justice for all. Be assured, I remain fully committed to securing non-discrimination protections for the LGBT community here in Jacksonville. This fall we will send a message that we are a city that welcomes and accepts all who wish to visit us, to work hard, and to raise a family in our city.”

Melissa Ross

In addition to her work writing for Florida Politics, Melissa Ross also hosts and produces WJCT’s First Coast Connect, the Jacksonville NPR/PBS station’s flagship local call-in public affairs radio program. The show has won four national awards from Public Radio News Directors Inc. (PRNDI). First Coast Connect was also recognized in 2010, 2011, 2013 and 2014 as Best Local Radio Show by Folio Weekly’s “Best Of Jax” Readers Poll and Melissa has also been recognized as Folio Weekly’s Best Local Radio Personality. As executive producer of The 904: Shadow on the Sunshine State, Melissa and WJCT received an Emmy in the “Documentary” category at the 2011 Suncoast Emmy Awards. The 904 examined Jacksonville’s status as Florida’s murder capital. During her years in broadcast television, Melissa picked up three additional Emmys for news and feature reporting. Melissa came to WJCT in 2009 with 20 years of experience in broadcasting, including stints in Cincinnati, Chicago, Orlando and Jacksonville. Married with two children, Melissa is a graduate of Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism/Communications. She can be reached at [email protected]


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