Three City Council members introduced a motion Wednesday that would prevent the city from conducting business with the state of North Carolina over a recently passed law they see as discriminatory against the LGBTQ community.
“I am outraged and quite frankly ashamed of the state legislators in North Carolina,” said Councilman Paul Koretz, who introduced the motion with Councilmen Mitch O’Farrell and Mike Bonin. “As elected leaders, we are in charge of creating laws to protect our community members from discrimination. We are supposed to be crusaders for social action and social justice for all, not just the select few.”
The new bill signed by North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper repealed last year’s House Bill 2 that required people at government-run facilities to use bathrooms and locker rooms that correspond to the gender on their birth certificate, but it left a few provisions in place, including a temporary ban on local governments passing or amending their own nondiscrimination ordinances.
“While HB 2 overtly discriminated against transgender individuals, HB 142 which replaced HB 2 isn’t much better because it covertly endorses institutional discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity,” Koretz said.
Last year, Mayor Eric Garcetti signed a motion passed by the City Council that banned nonessential travel by city employees to North Carolina until its laws discriminating against gay and transgender people are repealed. This week he encouraged the City Council to extend the ban, and the new motion would leave it in place and prevent any business from being done with the state until HB 142 is overturned.
The council motion is one of many actions taken by public and private institutions against North Carolina, including the NCAA, which moved some 2016- 17 championship events out of the state.
“I urge our business, sports, and entertainment communities to continue to stand up against actions of hate. Until the current administration in Washington D.C. decides to create a more favorable political climate and policies which unite instead of divide, we will continue to celebrate our diversity and to protect our rights, our safety, our health and our families,” Koretz said.
–City News Service