North Carolina lawmakers say they’ve agreed on a deal to repeal the bathroom bill

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Since H.B. 2 was signed, North Carolina has watched as companies abandoned plans to expand in the state, entertainers canceled shows and sports leagues pulled some games and vowed to keep out more. The most recent such threat, coming from the NCAA, gave lawmakers until Thursday to change the law if it wants to host any college sports championships through 2022.

According to the text of a bill aimed at repealing the bathroom measure and up for a vote on Thursday, lawmakers would also enact a law stating that “no local government in this state may enact or amend an ordinance regulating private employment practices or regulating public accommodations.” Local school boards and government agencies would also be prevented from regulating “multiple occupancy bathrooms, showers or changing facilities,” with that left up to state legislators.

 
 
 

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Yes, but...

"...gay rights advocates raised objections, arguing that the compromise would continue to allow discrimination."

"Gay rights advocates were harshly critical of the bill. Cathryn Oakley, senior legislative counsel for the Human Rights Campaign, said that the compromise would leave lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people with no statewide anti-discrimination ordinance and no ability to seek such protections from local government for a number of years.


“What that means for the L.G.B.T. community is that we continue to be boxed out of nondiscrimination protections,” she said.

Chris Sgro, executive director of the gay rights group Equality North Carolina, said that the proposal “keeps North Carolina as the only state in the country obsessed with where trans people use the restroom through law.”

 

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Why North Carolina abruptly flip-flopped on its ‘bathroom bill’

Even by North Carolina standards, the events surrounding its year-long "bathroom bill" drama have been frenetic.

In March 2016, North Carolina became the first state to pass a law restricting which public bathrooms and locker rooms transgender people can use. On Thursday — almost exactly a year later — it became the first state to repeal that law. In between, its voters helped elect Donald Trump to the presidency and kicked out a Republican governor.

Whether the bathroom bill's eventual demise is a spark of social change in the South or a blip on North Carolina's otherwise Republican-dominated politics depends on who you talk to.

Even as they decried the repeal as discriminatory, LGBT and civil rights advocates say the battle over bathrooms has awakened a new activist class.

"The political culture of the state has still changed for the better," said Chris Sgro, a former Democratic state lawmaker and head of Equality North Carolina. "We've been talking for 370 days in a row now about why transgender people need to be protected and what it means to be transgender."

Democrats point out that the same voters who narrowly chose Trump in November also ousted the sitting GOP governor — the first time in North Carolina's history that's happened. And there's a strong case to make that former governor Pat McCrory lost by 10,000 votes because of bathrooms: He defended the law so vigorously that he ended up owning it.

More here: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2017/03/31/why-north-carolina-abruptly-flip-flopped-on-its-bathroom-bill/?utm_term=.cdf14a742a2e

 

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