With just weeks left in the legislative
session, North Carolina lawmakers are expected to consider a bill
that would double down on a controversial law that targets the LGBT
House Bill 2 has been under fire since
it was approved in March during a one-day special session. The law
blocks cities from enacting LGBT protections and prohibits
transgender people from using the bathroom of their choice in
government buildings, including schools.
Passage led to canceled conventions and
concerts and even job losses for the state.
According to the News
& Observer, state Rep. Darren Jackson, a Democrat, has
seen the proposed changes.
Jackson said that the bill would
restore the ability to file employment discrimination lawsuits in
state courts and stiffen the penalties for people who commit crimes
in bathrooms. Most notably, the bill would not fix the law's most
“I don't view this as a fix at all,”
Jackson told the paper. “I don't view it as a step in the right
Chad Griffin, president of the Human
Rights Campaign (HRC), the nation's largest LGBT rights advocate,
denounced the plan.
“The last time these lawmakers got
together behind closed doors, we ended up with this vile HB2 law that
has threatened millions of people across the state of North
said in a blog post. “We’ve seen this show before and we
know how it ends. If these reports are true, the actions of these
legislators are about to make the mess they’ve created even worse.
By doubling down on this mistake, they will continue to harm
residents and visitors as well as alienate businesses who want to see
HB2 repealed and replaced with statewide non-discrimination
Republican leaders have repeatedly
defended House Bill 2.
The bill could be introduced as early
as this week, the News & Observer reported.