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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Taylor Carr at [email protected] or 315-945-7480
Today, the National Basketball Association announced that it will lift its ban on North Carolina’s ability to host the all-star game. This decision comes just days after the NCAA made a similar decision to lift its ban on the state’s ability to host championship events.
These announcements come in response to the “repeal” of HB2, one of the worst anti-LGBT laws on the books in the United States. The law was having significant economic impact on the state of North Carolina, with the Associated Press reporting that HB2 would cost the state over 3 billion dollars over 12 years. In response, North Carolina legislators passed HB142, the replacement bill meant to quell opposition and bring business back to the state. The problem is HB142 is no different than HB2.
HB142 bans all local laws protecting people from discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity until 2020. It invalidates local laws, and leaves LGBT people in North Carolina vulnerable to discrimination. It also makes North Carolina the only state that singles out transgender people by categorically banning all schools, state agencies and local governments from having policies that allow people to use the restroom consistent with their gender identity. Sadly, both the NBA and NCAA felt this was an appropriate level of discrimination.
“The NBA has a strong history of supporting LGBT equality, which makes today’s decision especially disappointing,” said Hudson Taylor, executive director of Athlete Ally. “To move their all-star game back to North Carolina while LGBT people aren’t protected under the law is a decision undermining the safety and wellbeing of the LGBT community.”
“We’re supportive of Commissioner Silver and the NBA’s reaffirmed investment in the LGBT community,” said Hudson Taylor, executive director of Athlete Ally. “As ongoing partners of the National Basketball Association, we’re committed to working with the NBA to deepen its impact on LGBT inclusion and equality efforts.”