Chicago's gay-friendly mayor calls it quits

Mayor Richard M. Daley's surprise announcement not to seek re-election in 2011 ends his 21-year career as one of the nation's most gay-friendly mayors.  

In his time at City Hall, Daley, 68, has shown historic and unparalleled support for Chicago's lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community with the expansion of Chicago human rights legislation to include protection from gender identity, instituting domestic partnership benefits for city employees, creating the Office of LGBT Health in the city Department of Health, establishing the Advisory Council on LGBT Issues, support for the North Halsted streetscape project and backing the Center on Halsted, Chicago's 60,000 square-foot (LGBT) community center located on North Halsted St. in Lakeview.
"Mayor Daley's support of our LGBT communities has been nothing short of outstanding," Sidetrack co-owner and Equality Illinois co-founder Art Johnston, told "Chicago is arguably now the best city in America for gay people, and the name Richard M. Daley is near the top of the reasons why."

"We should all be grateful that during his time as our Mayor he has stood in solidarity with the gay community on all of our issues," said state Rep. Sara Feigenholtz (D-Chicago). 
"All of us in the LGBT community owe Mayor Daley immense gratitude for his stalwart commitment to equality for all--including full respect for transgendered individuals, equal opportunity in housing, employment and public accommodation, and for his early and unequivocal advocacy for full marriage equality," said openly-gay state Rep. Greg Harris (D-Chicago). 

Read more reaction from Chicago's LGBT community on

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