North Carolina Gov. McCrory Signs Executive Order Clarifying ‘Bathroom’ Privacy Law

Pat McCrory makes remarks during an interview at the Governor's mansion in Raleigh, N.C., Tuesday, April 12, 2016. McCrory says he wants to change a new state law that prevents people from suing over discrimination in state court, but he's not challenging a measure regarding bathroom access for transgender people.
AP Photo/Gerry Broome

North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory has signed an executive order that he says serves to “affirm and improve” his state’s “commitment to privacy and equality” in the wake of a new “bathroom” privacy law.

McCrory issued the executive order on Tuesday after signing into law the Public Facilities Privacy and Security Act (HB2) last month – a measure that prohibits individuals from using public bathrooms that do not correspond to their biological sex. The law also blocks cities in the state from passing non-discrimination laws, allowing state laws to preempt local ordinances.

“After listening to people’s feedback for the past several weeks on this issue, I have come to the conclusion that there is a great deal of misinformation, misinterpretation, confusion, a lot of passion and frankly, selective outrage and hypocrisy, especially against the great state of North Carolina,” said McCrory in a video message about his executive order. “Based upon this feedback, I am taking action to affirm and improve the state’s commitment to privacy and equality.”

According to McCrory’s website, the executive order provides the following:

  • Maintains common sense gender-specific restroom and locker room facilities in government buildings and schools
  • Affirms the private sector’s right to establish its own restroom and locker room policies
  • Affirms the private sector and local governments’ right to establish non-discrimination employment policies for its own employees
  • Expands the state’s employment policy for state employees to cover sexual orientation and gender identity
  • Seeks legislation to reinstate the right to sue in state court for discrimination

The governor’s office says “the State of North Carolina is now one of 24 states that have protections for sexual orientation and gender identity for its employees.”

Family Research Council president Tony Perkins urged McCrory to stand firm and continue to defend HB2.

He said in a statement:

The Left’s response to Governor McCrory’s executive order shows it has no interest in a ‘live and let live’ policy, and could care less about the commonsense privacy concerns of parents and families throughout North Carolina, even when it comes to the question of letting grown men use women’s bathrooms and locker rooms.

While we don’t think Governor McCrory needed to provide additional clarity, his executive order does not change the law he just signed to prevent local governments from forcing people to violate their beliefs about sexuality and expectations of privacy.

Instead of supporting a common sense approach to bathroom policies, the ACLU and their allies’ objections show they will stop at nothing short of forcing people to accept their radical agenda. All people deserve human dignity and respect, but that doesn’t mean the government should force people to violate their deeply-held views on sexuality or their expectation of privacy in shared restrooms.

“We join our allies in North Carolina, and all people of good faith, in calling on Gov. McCrory to continue to defend H.B. 2,” Perkins concluded.

As CNN reports, the new law stirred opposition from LGBT agenda sympathizers. Bruce Springsteen cancelled a concert in North Carolina, and PayPal halted plans to open a new facility in Charlotte in the wake of the law’s passage. The NBA also threatened to move the 2017 All-Star Game from North Carolina – home of the Charlotte Hornets – to another venue.

North Carolina House Speaker Tim Moore, however, defended the new law’s protections for privacy.

“The way the ordinance was written by City Council in Charlotte, it would have allowed a man to go into a bathroom, locker or any changing facility, where women are — even if he was a man,” he explained. “We were concerned. Obviously there is the security risk of a sexual predator, but there is the issue of privacy.”


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