Under the Dome

Women’s, LGBT groups say they don’t need HB2 protections

Representatives of state Democratic legislators, women’s and LGBT rights organizations held a news conference Wednesday morning to say women and those in the LGBT community don’t need the protections Republican leaders claim House Bill 2 provides.

They were responding to recent remarks by HB2 supporters saying that the legislation restricting public restroom use to the gender assigned at birth was meant to protect and provide privacy to women. On Tuesday, Lt. Gov. Dan Forest said despite economic losses the state has suffered because of the law, there can’t be a “price tag on women.”

Rep. Rosa Gill of Raleigh, Jen Ferris of N.C. Women United, Alexis Dee of the Southern Comfort Conference board of directors and Gloria De Los Santos of Action N.C. participated. They claimed GOP leaders are trying to disguise discrimination as protection.

Gill, who is in her fourth term in the state House, repeated her party’s call for a full repeal of the bill. She said it was “admirable” that Sen. Tamara Barringer of Cary on Tuesday become the first Republican legislator to call for a repeal, due to the bill’s “unintended consequences” of economic harm, such as the NCAA decision to pull championship events from North Carolina in protest.

“I hope her other colleagues will be energized to come forward,” Gill said.

She said she hoped enough Democrats are elected in November to, with the help of Republicans, repeal the law.

Craig Jarvis: 919-829-4576, @CraigJ_NandO