The mayor of Burlington, Vermont, has imposed an official ban on city employees traveling to North Carolina because of the southern state’s opposition to transgender groups’ political demands.
“North Carolina continues to deny residents of and visitors to North Carolina fundamental civil rights,” Mayor Miro Weinberger said as he signed an executive order on April 10.
The mayor’s complaint comes after North Carolina voted to replace the 2016 HB2 transgender-related law with a similar law titled HB142. The new HB142 law preserves the state’s sole legal authority to decide who is a legal male or a legal female, so it preserves the legal and social distinctions between males and females in bathrooms and schools that pro-transgender groups seek to gradually eliminate.
“North Carolina’s new law does nothing to protect transgender individuals and creates a unique prohibition against municipalities taking any action to reduce discrimination,” Weinberger said. “Burlington will stand with the many other cities from around the country that will continue to boycott North Carolina until the state ends this discriminatory practice.”
Burlington “has a responsibility to protect Burlington’s officials and employees from discrimination when they are acting in their official capacities,” Weinberger wrote in the executive order.
Other places that have put travel bans against the state include Minnesota; Chicago; New York City; Seattle; Atlanta; Los Angeles; Salt Lake City; Cincinnati; Washington, D.C.; Portland, Oregon; Portland, Maine; Baltimore; San Francisco; Oakland, California; West Palm Beach, Florida; Wilton Manors; Florida; Palm Springs, California and Washington state.The mayor’s new executive order exempts the city of Charlotte from the travel ban because the city passed an ordinance in 2016 allowing people to use a bathroom that matches their flexible “gender identity” instead of their biological sex. “The City of Burlington supports the efforts of the City of Charlotte to promote equal treatment and inclusion,” Weinberger wrote in the order.
The mayor’s new executive order exempts the city of Charlotte from the travel ban because the city passed an ordinance in 2016 allowing people to use a bathroom that matches their flexible “gender identity” instead of their biological sex. “The City of Burlington supports the efforts of the City of Charlotte to promote equal treatment and inclusion,” Weinberger wrote in the order.
HB2, passed originally in March 2016, mandated that individuals use the restrooms that match the gender on their original or updated birth certificates, so it preserved the state’s single-sex bathrooms and shower rooms. To defeat the HB2 law, gay and transgender groups organized a national boycott by progressive business leaders and university sports leagues against the state’s voters.
On March 30 of this year, legislators replaced the HB2 law with the new HB142 law. HB-142 restricts local government, state agencies or public schools from blurring distinctions between males and female, for example, by creating legal rights for people who say they are transgender. The new law ended the sports boycott of the state.
The long fight over Hb2 and HB142 was a political defeat for the gay groups and the progressives in Charlotte who ignited the “transgender bathroom” fight in February 2016 by erasing any legal distinction between men and women in public bathrooms. Charlotte officials erased the distinctions by declaring that men who merely say they are “transgender women” could use women’s public bathrooms and shower rooms, and effectively eliminated women-only bathrooms in the city.
Also, North Carolina’s commerce secretary Tony Copeland says he’ll start calling companies which boycotted North Carolina because of HB2.