North Carolina pushes back against transgender mandate to eliminate sex-based protections for women and girls
March 24, 2016
Governor Pat McCrory signed House Bill 2 into law late Wednesday after the state legislature convened in a special one-day session to prevent a local Charlotte ordinance from taking effect April 1.
The Charlotte ordinance provided anti-discrimination protections for LGBT people but included a “Gender Identity” provision that eliminated sex-based protections for women and girls- in fact, it eliminated the legal category of “sex” entirely. The ordinance allowed any man, including convicted sex-offenders, to access women’s facilities merely by declaring a “feeling” that they were reproductively female, although male-bodied.
House Bill 2 eliminates the ability of local municipalities to enact their own unique categories of legal protections within the state. The bill also creates the first statewide anti-discrimination policy for women and girls, based on legal sex (which is already a federally-protected right but one under attack from the Obama administration -which seeks to replace the legal category of sex with “Gender Identity”, a subjective and undefined quality lacking any characteristics and based on men’s “feelings”.
North Carolina becomes the first state to officially clarify that areas of public nudity (such as restrooms and locker rooms) in state-run facilities (such as public schools and municipal buildings), are sex-segregated areas. An exception is made for transgender individuals who change their legal sex marker on their birth certificates. Transgender lobbying groups had declined to propose any sort of compromise prior to the session, claiming that excluding convicted male sex-offenders from women’s spaces would restrict the men’s rights to express their feelings.
The measure passed the House overwhelmingly with bipartisan support while all the Democrats in the Senate took the unusual step of recusing themselves by walking out of the session and declining to register a vote either way. The remaining Republicans passed the measure by unanimous 32-0 vote. The legislature will not reconvene until April 30.