Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2020-03-17
About WCMG Publications News  Entertainment Features Donate Bars & Clubs Calendar Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage



LGBT-procurement goals make up main part of MWRD meeting
by Carrie Maxwell, Windy City Times

facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email

The Metropolitan Water Reclamation District's ( MWRD's ) Committee on Affirmative Action held an informational study session on LGBT procurement goals and other pending issues Feb. 6 at MWRD's headquarters.

MWRD Vice President Barbara J. McGowan presided over the packed proceedings, which included a presentation by attorney/consultant Colette Holt. All nine commissioners—MWRD President Kari K. Steele, McGowan, Frank Avila, Cameron Davis, Kimberly Neely Du Buclet, Marcelino Garcia, Josina Morita, Debra Shore and Mariyana T. Spyropoulos—were in attendance. ( Shore and Garcia are members of the LGBTQ community. )

The meeting was the result of six months of work by Garcia and Shore to have LGBT-owned companies added under the minority-owned umbrella for district contract considerations.

In terms of LGBT programs, Holt said there is a disagreement over what the legal standards of classification are. She said this has been complicated due to the fact that the Obama administration viewed sexual orientation and gender identity discrimination as sex discrimination whereas the Trump administration disagrees. Holt added that there is a pending U.S. Supreme Court Title VII case that deals with this very question.

Holt outlined the kinds of certification issues LGBT-owned companies will have to grapple with, including what type of proof they will have to provide, especially for transgender people, and the equal-protection issues since people of color have to provide proof of their race to qualify.

As for data-collection issues, Holt said that to do any type of disparity analysis, information has to be gathered regarding people's sexual orientation and/or gender identities on vendor applications, bidders lists and other documents—an issue he said concerns agencies across the country.

Morita asked how MWRD and other agencies verify a person's race or sex. Holt said it could be their birth certificate or driver's license, among other documentation.

Shore asked Holt if, in her opinion, there are any initiatives at other agencies or municipalities that are exemplars in the effort to increase participation, outreach and data collection for all minority communities and women —to which Holt said no.

Garcia said LGBT-procurement goals are very important to him because "discrimination is discrimination." He added that if one minority group is targeted for discrimination, others will be, as well.

"In places where people are free to be who they are, they should be leaders in making sure people feel welcome and protections are extended to them," said Garcia, who added that one organization that is at the forefront of this issue is the National LGBT Chamber of Commerce.

During public comments one audience member, construction company owner Tamika Holt, took issue with the LGBT-procurement focus of the meeting, saying Black people are last on 16 economic indicators and still face discrimination.

Taj Development Company Inc. CEO Roxanna Daniel countered what Holt said, stating that, as a Black lesbian, she is especially discriminated against by Black firms because of her sexual orientation. She said the best way to figure out how to proceed with these LGBT-procurement goals is to go to places where that community gathers and get feedback. Daniel also offered her services to MWRD.

LGBT Chamber of Commerce of Illinois Director Jerome' Holston spoke about the work the chamber has done to certify LGBT-owned businesses over the years and that there have been no issues with their verification process. He added that the LGBTCC looked forward to partnering with MWRD in this effort.

Sustainable Systems LLC Environmental Engineer and Managing Member Sharon Waller offered some solutions that she said would benefit all disadvantaged communities, such as using electronic-procurement forms that would also be ecologically sound, giving out smaller contracts and utilizing a mentoring program.

Garcia spoke about the MWRD Affirmative Action Ordinance Draft Appendix O that he has been working on with Shore to expand opportunities to engage all groups where discrimination is prohibited by district statutes, including LGBT people.

The ordinance's purpose is "to encourage participation in MWRD prime contracts and associated subcontract—including, but not limited to, contracts and subcontracts for construction, professional services, goods and general services—for businesses owned by members of protected categories not currently eligible for utilization goals under MWRD Affirmative Action Appendices A, C, D, V or K and to gather information to guide future policy decisions aimed at minimizing barriers for these business owners."

Shore said this ordinance is not seeking to establish any numerical or participation goals or change the MWRD affirmative action ordinance. She called on everyone to look at the purpose of the ordinance—which she said is to be as inclusionary as possible.

Garcia asked MWRD Executive Director Brian Perkovich to have appropriate staff review and propose modifications to the appendix and have it put on the agenda for the next meeting on Feb. 20.

Among the other topics of discussion were minority, women-owned ( M/WBE ) and small business program legal standards that MWRD uses; pending cases across the country; trending issues; contract goal setting; how to include participation goals in furnish and deliver contracts; indirect M/WBE participation in district contracts; and intergovernmental agreements.

facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email

Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


Gay News

Chicagoan alleges anti-trans bias against Orangetheory location 2020-03-28 - Following two years of repeated requests to address alleged anti-trans discrimination at Orangetheory Fitness Chicago-Edgewater, non-binary Chicagoan Jes Scheinpflug posted about their experiences ...

Gay News

Fundraisers online for workers sidelined by Chicago bar closings 2020-03-27 - In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, Governor JB Pritzker has ordered the closing of all bars and restaurants for dine-in business through ...

Gay News

Coalition of states fighting Texas on blocking abortions during pandemic 2020-03-27 - NEW YORK — New York Attorney General Letitia James today announced that she will be building and leading a multistate coalition of attorneys ...

Gay News

COVID-19 Quigley, Larsen urge FDA to allow healthy gay, bi men to donate blood 2020-03-26 - U.S. Reps. Mike Quigley ( D-Illinois ) and Rick Larsen ( D-Washington ) urged the Food and Drug Administration ( FDA ) to ...

Gay News

COVID-19 Chicago lakefront, trails closed to public 2020-03-26 - Chicago aldermen have noted to their constituents that their access to public places has been curtailed. Starting March 26, all of Chicago's lakefront ...

Gay News

Police, fire officials joint Dept. Public Health work to protect first responder 2020-03-24 - CHICAGO — Chicago Police Superintendent Charlie Beck and Chicago Fire Department Commissioner Richard Ford II today joined Chicago Department of Public Health ( ...

Gay News

Greer named Biden's LGBTQ liaison 2020-03-23 - Reggie Greer—a D.C-based LGBTQ advocate who has worked as an Obama administration appointee and point person for LGBTQ elected officials—has been named LGBTQ ...

Gay News

COVID-19 Chicago Humanities Festival updates events 2020-03-23 - The Chicago Humanities Festival is in the process of modifying its spring programming because of COVID-19. It is following the latest recommendations of ...

Gay News

ELECTIONS 2020 PRIMARY ELECTION Oberweis wins, will face Underwood 2020-03-21 - Even though the 2020 Illinois primary took place March 17, dairy magnate and state Sen. Jim Oberweis was not declared the winner of ...

Gay News

Gov. Pritzker announces statewide stay at home order for COVID-19 containment 2020-03-21 - Chicago — Following the advice of leading public health experts around the globe, Governor JB Pritzker announced today has signed a statewide stay ...


Copyright © 2020 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.







About WCMG Publications News  Entertainment Features Donate Bars & Clubs Calendar Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.