ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – A bill that would prohibit discrimination based on a person’s reproductive health decisions gains first-round approval in the St. Louis Board of Aldermen.

More than a dozen opponents sat in the the balcony during the Board of Aldermen meeting, including Lucy Hannegan.

“I have all respect for pro-choice people. I have nothing against people personally,” Hannegan says.”But there are agencies and businesses that choose to be pro-life, exclusively and work with people from a pro-life point-of-view.”

The wording of the bill does exempt institutions with “historic religious affiliation” from the requirements, but opponents say that might not cover all so-called religious schools that want to maintain faculty that opposes abortion.

“This is a disrespect to our Christian and Catholic faith,” says Paulette Kapes who is in opposition of the bill. “We are not talking about parking meters, or building permits. We’re talking about life and death. We’re talking about the life of the mother and we’re talking about the life of an innocent unborn child.”

The St. Louis Archdiocese warns it will sue the city, if the bill is passed into law. Supporters say the bill is needed to protect women from workplace and housing discrimination based on their reproductive choices.

(TM and Copyright 2017 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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