The NCAA Board of Governors announced Tuesday that legislative action to repeal HB2 last week was far from perfect, but was just enough to be considered for hosting NCAA championships in the future.
Here’s an excerpt from their statement:
While the new law meets the minimal NCAA requirements, the board remains concerned that some may perceive North Carolina’s moratorium against affording opportunities for communities to extend basic civil rights as a signal that discriminatory behavior is permitted and acceptable, which is inconsistent with the NCAA Bylaws.
However, we recognize the quality championships hosted by the people of North Carolina in years before HB2. And this new law restores the state to that legal landscape: a landscape similar to other jurisdictions presently hosting NCAA championships
We are actively determining site selections, and this new law has minimally achieved a situation where we believe NCAA championships may be conducted in a nondiscriminatory environment. If we find that our expectations of a discrimination-free environment are not met, we will not hesitate to take necessary action at any time.
We have been assured by the state that this new law allows the NCAA to enact its inclusive policies by contract with communities, universities, arenas, hotels, and other service providers that are doing business with us, our students, other participants, and fans. Further, outside of bathroom facilities, the new law allows our campuses to maintain their own policies against discrimination, including protecting LGBTQ rights, and allows cities’ existing nondiscrimination ordinances, including LBGTQ protections, to remain effective.
In the end, a majority on the NCAA Board of Governors reluctantly voted to allow consideration of championship bids in North Carolina by our committees that are presently meeting.
It’s worth noting that NCAA championships previously awarded to North Carolina for 2017-18 will remain in the state. However those sites are now required to submit to the NCAA additional documentation demonstrating how student-athletes and fans will be protected from discrimination.
The repeal (HB 142) did not go far enough for many LGBT advocates who say the measure passed by the General Assembly and signed by Governor Cooper was both a betrayal and “a sham.”