NC CHAMBER OUTRAGEOUSLY SUGGESTS “COMPROMISE” POSSIBLE ON HB2 DESPITE OWN MEMBERS’ CALL FOR REPEAL: The business community knows that discrimination is bad for business and bad for North Carolina -- that’s why more than 200 major CEOs and executives have signed our letter demanding that NC Gov. Pat McCrory and state lawmakers repeal HB2. Yesterday’s statement by the NC Chamber of Commerce suggesting that full repeal is not necessary ignores the overwhelming outcry against HB2 from the business community -- including the chamber’s own members. More from HRC.
- Meanwhile, Mayor Roberts makes clear equality is not negotiable... Charlotte Mayor Jennifer Roberts told LGBT supporters on Wednesday that she will continue fighting for her city’s non-discrimination ordinance, which HB2 overturned. “When people talk about compromising on equality, I think how? Do you make them half equal? Equality is equality.”
HRC ENLISTS BUSINESS LEADERS TO JOIN AMICUS BRIEF: HRC President Chad Griffin met with CEOs from leading tech companies and enlisted their support in joining a business amicus brief in support of the Justice Department's lawsuit against Gov. McCrory. Taking their powerful voices to the federal courts on behalf of transgender equality echoes recent history in the fight for marriage equality: Nearly 380 major companies signed an amicus brief in the landmark U.S. Supreme Court case Obergefell v. Hodges, helping ensure our marriage equality victory.
MCCRORY IS WASTING NC TAXPAYER MONEY: Gov. McCrory continues to treat the Tar Heel State like a private cash register, racking up lawyer’s fees defending the discriminatory HB2 -- and now we learn he’s charging taxpayers for his travel expenses to promote the anti-LGBT law on television talk shows. North Carolina Democrats have filed a public records request seeking McCrory’s travel receipts and reimbursement details, since, ya know, taxpayers shouldn’t have to pick up the tab for McCrory’s political games. Particularly since they’re already paying a steep price for jobs and investments lost because of his HB2 fiasco.
- A Raleigh mother’s grief… During a news conference announcing the introduction of the most comprehensive non-discrimination bill ever introduced in North Carolina, a tearful North Carolina mom, Hope Tyler, emphasized the importance of LGBT-inclusive non-discrimination protections and said that HB2 is “emotionally killing our children.” Tyler said her 15-year-old transgender son is faltering because of HB2. “To the transgender community: You are not alone. We are going to repeal this bill,” she said -- and replace it with a law that prohibits discrimination instead of requiring it.
- No grounds for enforcement… NC police departments say they’re not enforcing HB2. They also confirm that there has never been a single complaint about a transgender person in a public bathroom.
- SIREN!... Man forced to use “ladies room” in governor’s mansion!
MEANWHILE, IN OHIO AND MICHIGAN… The Michigan Board of Education has proposed guidelines on accommodating LGBT students, triggering criticism from Republican lawmakers. At a board meeting this week, more than 100 people turned out to comment on the proposed guidelines, which would allow transgender students to use the bathroom that corresponds to their gender identity. The board has until next school year to take action. Ohio legislators held a hearing this week on two nondiscrimination bills -- one would guarantee protections in employment, housing and public accommodations on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity; the other excludes gender identity and fails to cover public accommodations, plus includes unique exemptions for sexual orientation.
ITALY SAYS “SÌ” TO CIVIL UNIONS: Yesterday, Italy’s Parliament voted 369-193 in favor of same-sex civil unions. While the new law includes tax, inheritance and welfare protections for same-sex couples, it still prevents them from adopting their partner’s biological children. Before yesterday’s vote, Italy was the only county in Western Europe with no legal form of recognition for same-sex couples. Though a welcome step, the new law does not provide full rights or protections for same-sex couples. Local LGBT advocates continue to push for full marriage rights. More from BuzzFeed.
EQUALITY RANKED: Check out the new ILGA-Europe Rainbow Index, which ranks 49 European countries’ treatment of LGBT people by examining their practices, laws and policies. The worst? Azerbaijan and Russia. More from The Associated Press.
CHINA’S FIRST TRANS LABOR DISPUTE REJECTED: A labor arbitration panel in China has unfortunately rejected a transgender man’s discrimination complaint against his former employer. In the landmark case for China, the man alleged that he was unfairly fired because of his gender identity. More from Hindustan Times.
RIGHTING A WRONG: Germany plans to pay full compensation to men who were convicted under the country’s former anti-sodomy laws. More from Pink News.
13 News Now profiles Sergeant Michele "Shelly" Meister, the Virginia Beach police department's first liaison to the LGBT community… The Washington Post makes the case for Eric Fanning, who has had his nomination to Secretary of the Army stalled by GOP Sen. Pat Roberts… 76 Crimes covers a proposed bill that would criminalize being gay in Senegal... ESPN considers the effects of HB2 on roller derby, a sport that welcomes transgender athletes… The Wall Street Journal takes a look at other states that have limited local non-discrimination protections… and the Star-Telegram covers the Fort Worth Independent School District Superintendent's stand for transgender students.