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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Mar 21, 2016 12:30 PM

Jen Jones, Communications Director, Equality NC
(919) 260-5906

Chris Sgro, Executive Director, Equality NC
(919) 829-0343 ext. 111

Equality NC Launches Petition to NCGA and Responds to Anti-LGBT Misinformation

State’s Largest LGBT Advocacy Organization Calls on Supporters to Stand Against Fear-Based Comments from NC Family Values Coalition and Senator Phil Berger

RALEIGH, NC – Equality NC, North Carolina’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) advocacy organization, launched a petition to members of the North Carolina General Assembly asking them not to pass legislation in a special session or the regular short session which would unfairly target gay and transgender people for political gain.

The General Assembly is already expected back in late April for its regular short session, and a special session just a month before would be costly to the taxpayers of North Carolina. It would be a drastic political stunt, costing taxpayers $42,000/day when no public safety concerns have resulted from ordinances similar to Charlotte’s before. ENC and allied organizations have now launched petitions asking members to not call a special session, and to vote against any potential legislation which unfairly targets the LGBT community in a short or special session. Link

“Today’s posturing from Tami Fitzgerald and previous comments from Senator Berger are a disgrace to our state. They have literally lied to the people of North Carolina about potential safety risks due to the passage of a comprehensive non-discrimination ordinance in Charlotte which mirrors ordinances in 200+ other cities, including Myrtle Beach and Columbia, SC,” said Chris Sgro, Executive Director of Equality NC. “Saying ‘the sky is red’ does not make it a viable opinion. That is what opponents to Charlotte’s law are doing by claiming it allows men in women’s rest rooms or encourages sexual predators. Senator Berger and Tami Fitzgerald are entitled to their own opinions, but they’re not entitled to waste taxpayer dollars or pass legislation based on fear-based and factless claims. The fact that there is not a public safety risk posed by non-discrimination ordinances is not opinion — it’s been proven across the nation. It is reckless to instill fear and hatred into public discourse for political gain, and members of the NCGA must reject that. They must vote against any legislation which would overturn Charlotte’s and other communities’ right to pass non-discrimination protections. Our community and common-sense North Carolinians won’t allow them to do this.”

Speaker Moore and Senator Berger have voiced manufactured concern over potential problems caused by the non-discrimination protection ordinance passed in Charlotte.

“Speaker Moore knows better. This is a purely political move. Similar protections have been passed in 200+ other cities and towns throughout the United States, including Myrtle Beach and Columbia, South Carolina. In some cities, these protective ordinances are decades old. There have not been any reported problems in other places, so it’s complete political theatre for the leadership to call for this “emergency” session. The voters of North Carolina will not forget this continued waste and overreach come November,” Sgro said.

ABOUT EQUALITY NC: Equality NC is a statewide organization working to secure equal rights and justice for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender North Carolinians. For more information, please visit w​

Equality NC is a statewide organization working to secure equal rights and justice for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender North Carolinians.

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