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BREAKING: CIAA Moves Championships out of North Carolina as Fallout from Anti-LGBTQ HB2 Continues

Today, HRC and Equality NC, the statewide organization working to secure equal rights and justice for LGBTQ North Carolinians, praised the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) decision to stand up for the safety of the organization’s employees, players, and fans by moving championship games out of North Carolina due to the state’s anti-LGBTQ HB2 law. Eight of the CIAA’s 12 member schools are based in North Carolina.

“Make no mistake, the fact that more championships are being moved out of North Carolina is a direct result of Pat McCrory’s stubborn refusal to repeal HB2,” said HRC President Chad Griffin. “McCrory’s reckless response to the mess he created by signing HB2 into law continues to inflict serious harm on the state. Lawmakers who continue to ignore the overwhelming majority of North Carolinians and business leaders demanding the discriminatory law be repealed do so at their own risk come November.”

“200 days after its initial passage, HB2 — the worst anti-LGBTQ bill in the nation — continues to hurt our state every day,” said Equality NC Executive Director Chris Sgro. “Where is Pat McCrory right now? As our state suffers economically and communities are targeted for discrimination by the law, the governor does nothing. The time for action is now. We must repeal this awful law.”

The CIAA announcement states: “The CIAA’s transition, beginning with the relocation of 8 championships, is the first step in demonstrating that the conference does not support laws which prevent communities from effectively protecting student-athletes and fans.” The CIAA decision follows similar announcements from the NBANCAA, and ACC, which also moved championship games out of the state because of the deeply discriminatory HB2 law.

Despite the growing and widespread opposition to HB2, Governor McCrory and the General Assembly have been unwilling to even consider repealing the full substance of the discriminatory law, including its ban on transgender people accessing restrooms consistent with their gender identity in government offices and schools, and its removal of municipalities’ ability to pass LGBTQ-inclusive non-discrimination laws and minimum wage ordinances.