North Carolina passed discriminatory anti-LGBTQ law in a 12-hour emergency session.
In an extremely controversial move, North Carolina just signed an “emergency” bill into law that allows for the continued discrimination against LGBTQ people and prohibits counties and cities from making their own non-discrimination laws.
Charlotte, North Carolina had recently passed a law that allowed LGBTQ people from being discriminated against by businesses. The law was set to go into effect on April 1st, but the state’s General Assembly called for a special session, which hasn’t been done in 35 years and cost the state government $42,000, on Wednesday to discuss and refute the new Charlotte law before it went into effect.
In a mere 12 hours, state legislators introduced, discussed, and agreed upon the new statewide bill. It was officially passed by North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory and is effective immediately.
The bill overrides all local ordinances regarding wages, employment, and public accommodations by explicitly leaving sexual orientation off of the list of groups that businesses cannot discriminate against. It also states that, in regards to public, multiple-occupancy bathrooms, people must use the restroom that corresponds with their “biological sex,” effectively discriminating against transgender people. Republicans who supported the bill stated that the bill was necessary to protect women and children against the “radical” action by Charlotte.
It’s reported that North Carolina is now at risk of losing $4.5 billion in federal funding because the new law is in direct violation of Title IX, a federal non-discrimination law, according to the Human Rights Campaign. Additionally, major companies like American Airlines and PayPal have denounced their support for the law and North Carolina and many other companies are considering backing out of their business with the state, which could hurt the state’s economy.
This new law will have devastating consequences for LGBTQ people if it is allowed to remain intact, though the huge backlash shows that there is hope it will be overturned.
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