North Carolina’s Anti-LGBT Law

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North Carolina’s Anti-LGBT Law

Claire Payne, Assistant Content Editor and Staff Writer

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On Wednesday, March 23rd, North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory signed a bill titled the “Public Facilities Privacy and Security Act,” also referred to as House Bill 2. This bill prevents local governments from setting their own anti-discrimination rules. The bill was in response to a recent anti-discrimination measure in Charlotte, N.C. that allowed transgender people to use the restroom aligned with their gender identity.

Following the signing of the bill, Governor McCrory released a statement, saying: “The basic expectation of privacy in the most personal of settings, a restroom or locker room, for each gender was violated by government overreach and intrusion by the mayor and city council of Charlotte. This new government regulation defies common sense and basic community norms by allowing, for example, a man to use a woman’s bathroom, shower or locker room.”

On Monday, a group of three LGBT individuals filed a federal lawsuit asking the judge to declare the law unconstitutional and a violation of federal laws banning sex discrimination. The lawsuit said that even though House Bill 2 is “illegal and unconstitutional,” the damage is far greater by prohibiting local government from “enacting express anti-discrimination protections based on sexual orientation and gender identity.”

In response to House Bill 2, more than 80 prominent business leaders along with Human Rights Campaign and Equality North Carolina signed a letter calling for a full repeal. The list included heads of Apple, Facebook, Airbnb, Yahoo, Twitter, Salesforce, Marriott, Pfizer and Levi Strauss.

Attorney General Roy Cooper also declared the new bill a “national embarrassment,” and also saying that the state’s lawyers will not defend it against a federal challenge from gay rights advocates. Cooper also noted that North Carolina’s economy back if it isn’t repealed.

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