KENNEDY TO NCAA: DON’T ACCEPT COMPROMISE ON CIVIL RIGHTS
Washington, D.C. – In a letter to the NCAA, Congressman Joe Kennedy III today criticized the deal to repeal North Carolina’s HB2 and urged NCAA President Mark Emmert to continue the boycott of championship events in North Carolina. Kennedy serves as Chair of the Congressional Transgender Equality Task Force.
The new legislation, HB142, puts in place a multi-year moratorium on certain local laws aimed at protecting the LGBT community.
“When it comes to civil rights there are not compromises, negotiations or trade-offs. Either the laws of this country apply equally to all of us or they don’t. By barring local anti-discrimination laws, North Carolina is leaving their transgender community without the protections any other citizen enjoys. That is the definition of discrimination. In recent years, the NCAA has set the bar high for tolerance and equality both on the court and in the stands. I applaud their leadership and urge them to consider this compromise what it is: a sham.”
To read Congressman Kennedy’s full letter, please click here. Kennedy has been an outspoken advocate of transgender rights and protections. He was a vocal supporter of Massachusetts' transgender non-discrimination bill, appearing in-person at the State House to testify in support of its passage. Last year he introduced the Do No Harm Act, which would amend the Religious Freedom Restoration Act to preserve civil rights. He has been a proud co-sponsor of major equality legislation, from the Equality Act to the Global Respect Act to the Student Non-Discrimination Act.