March 24, 2016
TLDEF Condemns North Carolina Law Striking Down LGBT Protections and Targeting Transgender Students for Discrimination
North Carolina Becomes First State to Exclude Transgender Students from School Bathrooms and Locker Rooms
New York, NY - The Transgender Legal Defense & Education Fund (TLDEF) condemns a new law passed by North Carolina lawmakers and signed by Governor Pat McCrory, which will ban transgender students in schools and all transgender people in public buildings from using bathrooms and other facilities that match who they are as male and female. The law also strikes down non-discrimination protections for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people in municipalities throughout the state and bars their future passage.
The bill, known as House Bill 2, was enacted after the Charlotte City Council passed a law that would have barred city contractors from discriminating against LGBT employees and added protections for LGBT people in public accommodations. The ordinance would have ensured that transgender people could access restrooms that match who they are as men and women.
Yesterday, House Bill 2 was rushed through a special session of the North Carolina General Assembly, passed quickly and signed by Governor McCrory late last night.
Statement from TLDEF Executive Director Michael Silverman
“With the stroke of a pen, North Carolina launched an all-out attack on its LGBT community. It earned the sad and shameful distinction of becoming the first state in our nation to mandate discrimination against transgender students. It declared open season on the LGBT community by striking down every local law that protected gay and transgender people from discrimination and barring any municipality from adopting such protections in the future.
“North Carolina has turned its back on LGBT people and singled them out for mistreatment. It has made them strangers to their own state government. While North Carolinians take for granted that they can live and work free from discrimination and harassment, LGBT people in that state are now singled out and forced to live in constant fear that they could be fired from their jobs, thrown out of their homes and barred from public facilities just because of who they are.
“This incredible attack comes at a time when LGBT Americans face an onslaught of discriminatory bills in states around the country. We urge lawmakers in other states to reject legislation that targets the LGBT community for discrimination and harassment.These bills serve only to harm a vulnerable and marginalized population. LGBT Americans deserve to be protected under the law and treated with dignity and respect in society.”