A social justice organization working for equal rights of gay Texans issued a warning on Tuesday.
GetEQUAL Texas sent out a travel alert on Tuesday for any lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender travelers headed to San Antonio.
Mitsue McCoy, a member of GetEQUAL Texas, said they felt the alert was necessary because of the heated meetings at city council over the city's proposed nondiscrimination ordinance and because Councilwoman Elisa Chan has been vocal in her opposition.
"We feel like we have a responsibility to let people (who) are coming in to the city, visiting or people that live here (to know) what the current state of things is," said McCoy. "There are no federal protections in place. There are no state protections in place. There are protections in the city in place."
In the alert, GetEQUAL Texas even went as far as issuing some precautions when traveling to San Antonio like:
- Avoid traveling alone in the city
- Visit only known LGBT-friendly establishments
- Be aware of your surroundings
McCoy also said the city has put off the nondiscrimation ordinance for too long.
However, on Tuesday, while addressing the North Chamber of Commerce, Mayor Julian Castro said he can't imagine San Antonio not passing it.
"Any community that is going to prosper in the 21st Century must be a community that is open to anyone that respects everyone," said Castro. "Where everyone belongs and we have no second-class citizens."
"While the mayor's words are encouraging, unfortunately, words aren't enough," said McCoy. "We need those to translate into votes from our city council people."
On Tuesday, the San Antonio Convention and Visitors Bureau released this statement:
“San Antonio is a destination that warmly welcomes all visitors, and is a city where everybody belongs. As the number one leisure destination in Texas, we welcome millions on an annual basis and the safety and comfort of all our visitors is a top priority for us. We are a city that treats our residents and visitors with respect and dignity and where diversity is embraced.”
The city is scheduled to vote on the non-discrimination ordinance on Sept. 5.