LGBT groups rally to fight 'backroom deal' HB2 repeal

The organizations say the repeal bill does not go far enough to get rid of the state's so-called "bathroom bill," which was passed a year ago.

The state capital in Raleigh, North Carolina. (Image via Wikimedia Commons, by Jim Bowen from Fort Worth, US - http://www.flickr.com/photos/82538566@N00/751768884/, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=2575996)
The state capital in Raleigh, North Carolina. (Image via Wikimedia Commons, by Jim Bowen from Fort Worth, US - http://www.flickr.com/photos/82538566@N00/751768884/, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=2575996)

A bill to repeal North Carolina’s House Bill 2 passed the state’s Senate on Thursday as LGBT rights organizations voiced their disapproval of the measure.

HB2, which was passed one year ago, requires people to use public bathrooms and locker rooms that correspond with their biological gender—singling out transgender individuals—and prohibits local governments from enacting protections for LGBT citizens.

The repeal bill only removes the bathroom portion of HB2, leaving the rest of it in place. LGBT advocacy organizations mobilized on social media on Wednesday night and Thursday morning to call on North Carolina legislators to stop the bill and support a full repeal. Update: The bill has passed both houses of the General Assembly and was signed into law by Governor Cooper.

Some organizations are demanding the NCAA speak out against the partial repeal, though it has remained silent so far. Last year, the organization pulled its March Madness games out of North Carolina because of HB2 and gave the state one year to repeal the bill or lose all championship games until 2022.

Local LGBT organizations are providing updates from the ground and asking North Carolinians to call their representatives.

Last year, nearly 100 executives spoke out against HB2 in a letter to the governor, including businesspeople from Google, Facebook, Bank of America, and PayPal. Most brands are staying quiet on the repeal as it makes its way through the legislature, with a few notable exceptions.

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