Free shipping over $99 | Interest Free *no credit check* financing is available!

HRC, EqualityNC and NCTE Urge Charlotte Leaders To Reject Any Deal Rolling Back Protections

by HRC staff May 20, 2016


Today, HRC, Equality North Carolina and the National Center for Transgender Equality (NCTE) sent a letter to Charlotte Mayor Jennifer Roberts and the seven City Council members who voted to advance city-wide LGBT non-discrimination protections on February 22, 2016. The letter comes amid reports of a possible deal on HB2 that could potentially involve repealing the city’s non-discrimination ordinance. The Councilmembers who voted in favor of these crucial protections were: Julie Eiselt, James Mitchell, Al Austin, Patsy Kinsey, John Autry,  LaWana Mayfield and Vi Lyles.

HB2 has overturned municipal protections for LGBT people at the local level, barred transgender people from using restrooms consistent with their gender identity in all publicly-owned property, and gutted the ability of people who have been discriminated against -- including on the basis of race, religion, and sex -- to sue in state court.

In the letter, HRC President Chad Griffin, NCTE Executive Director Mara Keisling, and Equality North Carolina Executive Director Chris Sgro urge the mayor and city councilmembers not to compromise on this issue and remind them that nothing short of full repeal of HB2 is acceptable. They are leaders on the right side of history.

The letter follows:

Dear Councilmembers,

We respectfully write to you on behalf of Equality North Carolina, the National Center for Transgender Equality and the Human Rights Campaign’s millions of members and supporters, who continue to admire your courage and resilience in the fight to repeal HB2.

Four months ago, you boldly passed protections for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) citizens -- critical nondiscrimination protections that already exist in 18 states and more than 100 other cities across the country. In fact, Charlotte was one of only a handful of major cities without these protections. Despite facing threats from Governor Pat McCrory and lawmakers in Raleigh, you voted to make the Queen City a more just, more equal place. With your votes, you forced our fellow Americans to address the rampant inequality that LGBT Americans -- particularly transgender Americans continue to face every day.

You know all too well the backlash that has ensued. Our opponents mobilized as we knew

they would and rammed through the hateful HB2 in less than a day, with none of the discussion or deliberation in which you thoughtfully engaged. With more than 200 business leaders, major entertainers, and the NCAA and NBA unifying against HB2, including cancelling plans to move to or perform in the city, times have been undoubtedly difficult in Charlotte and across North Carolina. But make no mistake, your votes onFebruary 22 did not cause this. The reckless actions of state leaders, elected to protect all citizens, did. They are the ones who jeopardized and continue to jeopardize the state’s economic opportunities.

The road ahead may be long, and the challenges today may feel insurmountable, but we write today to urge you to stay the course. Backing down in the face of hate isn’t right and it won’t work. Too many people -- in North Carolina and across this country -- have already suffered at the hands of Governor McCrory, Senator Phil Berger and House Speaker Tim Moore. Not at your hands. But cutting a deal with the likes of lawmakers -- or a Chamber that didn’t support Charlotte’s non-discrimination ordinance in the first place -- would be foolish and dangerous. They have no desire to take even a single step to ensure LGBT people retain the protections every single American so rightfully deserves.

You must not waiver in your commitment, pin your hopes on a costly and long court battle, or undermine the very values you all fought to protect. You are lawmakers. In passing the ordinance, you were doing your job. We urge you to resist retreating, to resist putting what’s easy over what’s right. A deal that calls for a repeal of the ordinance  would only tarnish the legacy of your city which you have worked so hard to strengthen.

This moment in which we find ourselves is quickly defining the type of nation we are destined to be. Today, you are standing on the right side of history. As Councilmember Al Austin said the night you passed the ordinance, “Are we a city that panders to fear and hate to those who wish to perpetuate fear and injustice? I say to you, ‘Not on my watch.’” That was true then, and remains true now. We cannot ‘compromise’ on equality and the world is watching.

Respectfully,

Chris Sgro, Executive Director, Equality North Carolina
Mara Keisling, Executive Director, National Center for Transgender Equality
Chad Griffin, President, Human Rights Campaign





HRC staff
HRC staff

Author


Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.


Also in Think

State Senate Candidate Calls Gay Teen Who Committed Suicide A Murderer, Internet Comes For Him

by Derek de Koff September 29, 2016

The below comment was written by Jason Christensen, a man currently running for Utah State Senate, in regards to a teenager who committed suicide last week over his sexuality: Since being posted on Reddit earlier today, it’s drummed up considerable outrage, with hundreds of people demanding that Christensen’s political career come to an abrupt and inauspicious end. Related: Andrew Christian Model [...]

Continue Reading →

You Can’t Unsee The Hillary “Shimmy Song”

by Jeff Taylor September 29, 2016

Earworm warning: this one will burrow its way into your brain. You’ve seen the shimmy GIFs and memes, now this growing phenomenon has its own song, and it’s…well, kind of annoying actually, but still somewhat amusing. Related: Randy Rainbow Moderates The First Debate; It’s Super The lyrics center around how Hillary Clinton won the first debate [...]

Continue Reading →

Justin Theroux Reflects On Those Infamous ‘Leftovers’ Sweatpants Photos

by Graham Gremore September 29, 2016

It was August 2014. The Leftovers was wrapping up its first season on HBO and the entire Internet was in a tizzy over Justin Theroux’s sweatpants. More specifically, what was flopping around underneath the sweatpants he was wearing in the opening scene of an episode. In case you need a refresher, here you go: After making national headlines, [...]

Continue Reading →