(West Palm Beach, Florida) -- In the wake of North Carolina's enactment of HB2, West Palm Beach Mayor Jeri Muoio became the first mayor in Florida to place a travel ban on city-funded trips to North Carolina.
which was passed by North Carolina's Republican-controlled General
Assembly and signed into law by Gov. Pat McCrory last week, nullified
local LGBT rights laws in North Carolina. The law was enacted in
response to an LGBT-inclusive civil rights ordinance in Charlotte, which
prohibited discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender
identity or expression. The Charlotte ordinance also allowed transgender
people to use bathrooms which relate to their gender identity.
"For more than two decades, West Palm Beach has been in the forefront,
protecting the civil rights and ensuring equality for the LGBT
community," said Muoio. "Until North Carolina's discriminatory law is amended or repealed, West Palm Beach taxpayers will not subsidize legally-sanctioned discrimination against LGBT people."
Muoio took this action at the request of the Palm Beach County Human
Rights Council (PBCHRC), a local civil rights organization dedicated to
ending discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender identity and
gender expression. Since 1990, PBCHRC has been responsible for the
enactment of more than 100 local laws and policies which prohibit
discrimination against the LGBT community.
"North Carolina's leaders have struck down local LGBT-inclusive
discrimination ordinances and have prohibited the enactment of similar
laws forever," said retired judge Rand Hoch, PBCHRC President and
Founder. "We commend Mayor Muoio for putting her strong beliefs against
bigotry into action by prohibiting taxpayer dollars being used in North
Numerous corporations including Apple, IBM,
Facebook, Google and Wells Fargo have issued statements condemning the
State of North Carolina for enacting HB2.
Last Friday, San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee imposed a similar ban on travel to North Carolina.
In 2015, Muoio was one of a handful of mayors who announced a similar travel ban to the state of Indiana, following the enactment of Indiana's passage of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act.
the result of pressure placed on Indiana by civic leaders, businesses,
and numerous other entities, the Indiana Legislature promptly amended
the Religious Freedom Restoration Act,by specifying that
the law could not be used as a legal defense to discriminate against
patrons based on their sexual orientation or gender identity.
"The focus in now on the North Carolina General Assembly,"
said Hoch. "Until they repeal this clearly unconstitutional law, the
LGBT and allied communities will we will keep the economic pressure on."