A new California law effectively bans state funds from paying for travel to states such as North Carolina that have enacted bathroom laws that require people to use a public restroom that corresponds to their birth sex, and other religious freedom laws. But, if Assembly Bill 1887 is fully enforced, it would stop sports teams from California’s public universities from traveling to games in those states.
Bill 1887, which took effect this year, currently bans travel to Kansas, Mississippi, North Carolina and Tennessee and will likely ban travel to Texas and other states if they pass bathroom bills currently wending the way through legislatures.
University of California, Los Angeles Athletics spokesperson Josh Rupprecht told the Daily Bruin that the school’s athletic program does not get state funds, but even so there will be no travel to states on the ban list.
“UCLA and UCLA Athletics are fully committed to promoting and protecting equity, diversity, and inclusion as set forth in the university’s Principles of Community,” Rupprecht told the paper.
This means the school will now cancel travel to the South Regional f0r the 2017 NCAA men’s basketball tournament being held in Tennessee this year. Also, the law would stop the women’s and men’s basketball teams from traveling to the blacklisted states.
Other programs are also affected by the travel ban. UC Berkeley has now canceled plans for the men’s basketball team to travel to Kansas for a series of games, according to the Daily Californian.
“We will remain in compliance with the law and cannot predict any changes that the legislature or governor may enact,” Cal Athletics said in a statement.
But, despite the proclamations of adhering to the ban, UCLA spokesman Rupprecht reportedly told authorities that the school would still participate in NCAA tournaments in Kansas.
According to The Wichita Eagle, Rupprecht said that if “the NCAA assign us to a tournament bracket in a state affected by AB 1887, barring unforeseen circumstances, we will not deny our student-athletes the right to participate in postseason play.”
There are some exceptions in the state law. Events scheduled before the law went into effect are excluded from the ban and travel not paid for with state funds is also exempted.
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