by Itunuoluwa Adebo
On Thursday, North Carolina lawmakers passed a bill that repeals the state’s controversial bathroom law in a move meant to end a rocky year that watched businesses leave and major events and concerts canceled.
Gov. Roy Cooper who signed the measure into law, said, “For over a year now, House Bill 2 has been a dark cloud hanging over our great state. It has stained our reputation. It has discriminated against our people and it has caused great economic harm in many of our communities.”
Cooper said the new law is “not a perfect deal and it is not my preferred solution.”
He preferred a law that added measures of protection for LGBTQ North Carolinians, but said that wasn’t possible because the Republicans held super majority in the Legislature.
The reaction from the LGBTQ group is fierce, they believe the new bill which eliminates rules about who can use which restroom but retains other features still allows for discrimination against transgender people. Cooper said the protections are temporarily delayed, and he will work to ensure they are not denied forever.
The bill is a compromise agreed to Wednesday by Cooper, and two of the state’s Republican legislators, was approved by the House and Senate after contentious debate.
The new bill repeals last year’s House Bill 2. That bill had required that people at a government-run facility must use bathrooms and locker rooms that correspond to the gender on their birth certificate, if the rooms in question are multiple-occupancy.