In 1990, the city council of Kansas City, Missouri voted on a highly contested piece of civil rights legislation—a measure which would have officially outlawed discrimination against people with HIV/AIDS, gay men, lesbians, and bisexuals in the areas of housing, employment, and public accommodations.

Over a period of three weeks, council members heard more than twelve hours of testimony from hundreds of citizens. Supporters and opponents orchestrated massive campaigns, flooding City Hall with a record-setting amount of phone calls, letters, and demonstrations.

 

This human rights ordinance quickly became one of the most controversial pieces of legislation in Kansas City's history.

The Ordinance Project contextualizes the controversy surrounding this human rights ordinance within the broader resurgence of activism fueled by the AIDS epidemic.

 

 

Utilizing over fifty hours of oral history interviews with the Kansas City activists, community organizers, and politicians directly involved in fighting for equal rights, the film is a powerful reminder that the push for  civil rights is an ongoing struggle which can never be taken for granted.

 

2019