No Pac-12 travel to North Carolina until the state is safe for LGBTQ people
The “Conference of Champions” has a chance to be a champion for LGBTQ rights.
When North Carolina first passed its anti-LGBTQ law H.B. 2, CREDO activists helped pressure the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) to take a stand against bigotry and pull its games from the state. Recently the NCAA made an appalling decision that goes against every commitment it has made to defend LGBTQ people. It fell hook, line and sinker for North Carolina lawmakers’ fake, discriminatory HB 2 “repeal” and decided to bring its games back.
The Pac-12 – the premier athletic conference in the western United States – is one of the so-called “Power Five” conferences in the NCAA. Its own mission proclaims a “commitment to gender equity” and “the welfare of the student athlete.”1 It represents college athletes at 12 schools, including schools in California, Oregon and Washington - states that champion LGBTQ equality.
The Pac-12 Conference should not abide by the NCAA’s cowardly and politically craven decision to disregard discrimination against the LGBTQ community in North Carolina. It must suspend all travel of student-athletes to North Carolina and any other state that is not safe for LGBTQ people.
Tell Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott: Suspend travel of all Pac-12 programs to North Carolina until the hateful, anti-LGBTQ H.B. 2 is fully repealed and any state that isn’t safe for LGBTQ people.
Pac-12 schools participate in 22 NCAA Division I sports. But its athletes do not just play in western states. They play in tournaments across the country, including in states like North Carolina that discriminate against the LGBTQ community.
The Pac-12 should not be sending any student-athletes to North Carolina or any other state with hateful anti-LGBTQ laws. Every time Pac-12 schools agree to send student-athletes to North Carolina they are putting some of them at risk of facing anti-LGBTQ discrimination. That needs to stop – now.
Tell Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott: Suspend travel of all Pac-12 programs to North Carolina until the hateful, anti-LGBTQ legislation H.B. 2 is fully repealed, and to any state that isn’t safe for LGBTQ people.
The passage of H.B. 2 prompted a parade of corporations and institutions to leave North Carolina and take their money with them. It likely cost the state at least $3.7 billion.2 The NCAA was one of the most influential institutions to go and getting it back was a top priority.
In a desperate attempt to meet an NCAA deadline to repeal the state’s anti-LGBTQ H.B. 2 or lose the chance to host NCAA games through 2022, the North Carolina legislature passed H.B. 142, claiming that it repealed H.B. 2.3 The new legislation is no repeal – it’s just as discriminatory against LGBTQ people as before. And the NCAA fell for it.
That appalling decision doesn’t just threaten LGBTQ students, athletes and communities in North Carolina. It has also already emboldened bigoted legislators in states like Texas to push for similar discriminatory anti-LGBTQ laws.4
Now the Pac-12 conference has an opportunity to send a powerful message to North Carolina, the NCAA and lawmakers all over the country: Anti-LGBTQ legislation like H.B. 2 is unacceptable.
Tell Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott: Suspend travel of all Pac-12 programs to North Carolina until the hateful, anti-LGBTQ legislation H.B. 2 is fully repealed and any state that isn’t safe for LGBTQ people.
Thank you for standing against discrimination.
- “[2015-2016 Pac-12 Compliance Handbook] (http://compliance.pac-12.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/2016-17-P12-Handbook.v5-optimized.pdf),” accessed May 5, 2017.
- Zach Ford, “North Carolina attempts bait-and-switch with NCAA, pushes new anti-LGBT bill,” ThinkProgress, March 30, 2017.
- Nico Lang, “The new “license to discriminate” bill in Texas may be the most extreme anti-LGBT proposal yet,” Salon, Feb. 15, 2017.