Press Release • July 5, 2023

North Carolina Governor Vetoes Three Anti-LGBTQ+ Bills


July 5, 2023

Adam Polaski | Campaign for Southern Equality | 610.306.7956 |
Nate Fischer | Equality NC |

Advocates in North Carolina urge NCGA to sustain righteous vetoes while preparing the community for potential enactment.

RALEIGH – Today North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper vetoed three anti-LGBTQ+ bills that have passed the North Carolina General Assembly. The three bills are: HB808, which prohibits the initiation of gender-affirming care for transgender youth in the state; SB49, a broad curriculum censorship bill that also requires staffers to "out" transgender students; and HB574, which prohibits transgender students from participating in school sports.

Kendra R. Johnson (she/her/ella pronouns), Executive Director of Equality NC, said:

"This slate of anti-LGBTQ+ legislation is unacceptable – and we're grateful that Gov. Cooper made the right choice by vetoing. Now we implore the NCGA to do the right thing and recognize that this entire package of bills is dangerous, cruel, and deeply unpopular. These bills would tarnish North Carolina's reputation as an inclusive and welcoming place to live, work, and visit – and they would cause immense damage to transgender and queer youth, who already experience significant disparities. Anti-LGBTQ+ attacks have no place in North Carolina and the vetoes must be sustained."

Last week the Campaign for Southern Equality, Equality NC, the ACLU of NC, and Planned Parenthood hosted an Emergency Town Hall specifically focused on HB808 to help families prepare for the potential passage of a ban on gender-affirming care. Hundreds from across the state attended and the organizations will offer additional community resources as the landscape evolves.

Families of transgender youth in North Carolina are now eligible to apply for support from the Southern Trans Youth Emergency Project (STYEP), a regional project of the Campaign for Southern Equality. Equality NC is CSE's partner for STYEP in North Carolina. Through STYEP, families can receive accurate information about HB808 and other gender-affirming care policies; patient navigation to identify gender-affirming care in North Carolina and out of state; and emergency grants of $500 for immediate needs. Learn more about STYEP at

If enacted, the sections of HB808 that prohibit gender-affirming care for minors would take effect on August 1. Youth already receiving a "course of treatment" prior to August 1 will be able to continue that treatment.

Rev. Jasmine Beach-Ferrara, (she/her pronouns), Executive Director of the Campaign for Southern Equality, said today:

"Even as we will advocate tirelessly for the NCGA to do the right thing by sustaining Gov. Cooper's veto, we remain clear-eyed that families should take steps to prepare if anti-LGBTQ+ legislation is enacted. Our team is at the ready to support families through our Southern Trans Youth Emergency Project to ensure that North Carolina youth have uninterrupted access to the health care they need and deserve."

"Each of these bills is flatly discriminatory and we are confident they will ultimately be struck down. We want LGBTQ+ youth across the state to know we are with them every step of the way and will never stop fighting for their equality."

The bills now return to the NC General Assembly, which can vote to sustain or override Gov. Cooper's vetoes.

Learn more about anti-LGBTQ+ legislation being considered in North Carolina by visiting the website for NC is Ready.

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Equality North Carolina builds LGBTQ+ power through advocacy, education, and uplifting the stories of queer and trans North Carolinians in pursuit of racial and social justice.

Based in Asheville, NC, the Campaign for Southern Equality promotes full LGBTQ equality across the South. Our work is rooted in commitments to equity in race, gender and class.

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