Letters to the Editor

Tony Cope: HB2 damaging businesses

North Carolina recently passed House Bill 2, a bill that revokes legislation protecting LGBT people from discrimination.

As a small business owner, I’m very concerned with this decision. It creates a hostile business environment and will hurt small businesses and employees. This law is giving North Carolina a reputation as a state that embraces discrimination.

Because my company is headquartered here, I’m concerned we’ll have trouble recruiting talented employees. Additionally, my company thrives because we work with large, national companies. I’m worried they will no longer want to do business in North Carolina if they feel it’s a discriminatory business environment.

We’re already seeing the ripple effects of this with PayPal’s recent decision to cancel expansion in Charlotte, which is costing 400 new jobs. Research shows that other small business owners are on the same page.

Polling from Small Business Majority found 67 percent of North Carolina entrepreneurs believe there should be a state law prohibiting employment discrimination against gay and transgender people.

I want to create a positive and open environment for employees and clients, but HB2 is standing in the way. This law could seriously damage our small businesses, and I urge lawmakers to reconsider this legislation.

Tony Cope