National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce Condemns the Shameful State-Sanctioned Discrimination Law Passed in North Carolina

WASHINGTON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–The National
Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce
(NGLCC), the business voice of
the global LGBT community, stands with our corporate partners and local
business leaders in condemning the misguided anti-LGBT legislation
signed into law by Governor Pat McCrory. This law, hastily rushed
through the North Carolina State Assembly at a significant expense to
taxpayers, not only allows for state-sanctioned discrimination in public
accommodations, it also further bans Charlotte and any other
municipality from adding any protections for LGBT citizens.

NGLCC calls upon its committed corporate partners to issue public
statements affirming that such discrimination will irreparably damage
North Carolina’s economy. The organization salutes the many corporate
leaders, including Salesforce’s Marc Benioff, already demonstrating
solidarity with the LGBT community by denouncing these laws as
destructive for business and for American social progress.

“It’s morally unacceptable that hardworking, tax-paying LGBT North
Carolinians can continue to be fired from their jobs, evicted from their
homes, or denied service in restaurants and shops simply for being who
they are—now with the full support of their elected representatives,”
said NGLCC Co-Founder & President Justin Nelson. “This law doesn’t
protect anyone, in fact it increases risk for the most vulnerable. All
North Carolinians deserve to live and work in a place that values and
respects all people. There will be a major impact on the North Carolina
economy as both major corporations and small businesses will take their
businesses to states where all are welcome. NGLCC and its ever-growing
network of corporate partners, local chambers and small businesses
consistently assert the economic benefits of non-discrimination and
aggressively pushing back against these heinous laws that further
marginalize people. We will continue to bring pressure from our Fortune
500 allies and the estimated 1.4 million businesses in this nation that
are owned by LGBT people defeat any law that sanctions discrimination.
These laws erode away at our vibrant and inclusive economy.”

This law will make it very difficult for transgender business owners to
attend networking and educational events held at public spaces, which
will harm their ability to grow their business. It is widely understood
that transgender and gender non-conforming people are already at very
high risk of violence and harassment in public places and this law
increases the likelihood of violence against transgender people.

“Our NGLCC stakeholders want to do business in states that value and
welcome all people and recognize that a fully engaged workforce and
supply chain is one where all citizens can bring their whole selves to
their business every day free from fear of discrimination,” says NGLCC
Co-Founder & CEO Chance Mitchell. “The non-discrimination and
intentional inclusion policies of a state play a tremendous role in our
selection process for our high-profile events, including the NGLCC
International Business & Leadership Conference. NGLCC will not be
spending our community’s money in a state that publicly endorses hate
and discrimination.”

In 2015, the NGLCC conference brought over 800 business leaders and
corporate allies to Fort Lauderdale, Florida and had a multi-million
dollar economic impact across all sectors touched by travel and tourism.
The Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention and Visitors Bureau, with the
help of the Destination Marketing Association International, estimated
the economic impact of our 2015 conference at $4 million dollars.

ABOUT NGLCC:

The National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce is the business voice of
the LGBT community and is the largest global not-for-profit advocacy
organization specifically dedicated to expanding economic opportunities
and advancements for LGBT people. NGLCC is the exclusive certification
body for LGBT-owned businesses. www.nglcc.org
| @NGLCC

Contacts

National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce
Jonathan Lovitz
Vice
President of External Affairs
954-695-5896
jlovitz@nglcc.org