Letters to the Editor

Writer believes that NC law is not just about bathrooms

Re Cal Thomas column on Sunday on North Carolina fighting back on the bathroom issue:

It's more than about bathrooms. All the attention on who can use toilets and locker rooms has overshadowed what employment rights advocates say is an even more expansive change made by the law — one that could affect all workers in North Carolina, not just those who are lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender.

Tucked inside this bill is language that strips North Carolina workers of the ability to sue under a state anti-discrimination law, a right that has been upheld in court since 1985. If you were fired because of your race, gender, or religion you no longer have a place to turn. Conservative-leaning groups have been trying for decades to reduce the number of civil lawsuits in the states. In this bill, lawmakers accomplished this by adding a single sentence to the state’s employment discrimination law that says that no person may bring any civil action based upon the public policy expressed in it.

It also allows the state to have control over minimum wage rates, meaning local governments can’t set their own. While no local municipalities in North Carolina have set different wages than the state, some wanted to make changes and now they can’t.

The feds may have overreached in their reaction to this bill but they are just mirroring what North Carolina is trying to do with their municipalities.

John LoConte, Garden City Beach