University of Vermont axes North Carolina game over LGBT law

Vermont Catamounts

Vermont Catamounts

In a statement posted on the university's athletics website Wednesday night, Jeff Schulman, Vermont's athletics director, said the university "strive (s) very hard to create an inclusive climate for our students and staff in which they all can feel safe, respected, and valued".

A federal judge ruled Friday that the University of North Carolina system can not enforce the part of the state's House Bill 2 law that deals with which restrooms transgender people use, a controversial provision that prompted the Justice Department to sue the state.

Schulman said the decision to cancel the visit to UNC on December 28 was made after consulting with coaches, the team and school officials.

The UNC employee, Joaquin Carcano, issued a statement that the judge's decision represents an important step toward defeating the law that has forced him to go far from his office to use a restroom.

"Those weren't options they were comfortable with", Schulman told the Free Press. He added that 21 other states join North Carolina in challenging the "overreach" by the Obama administration in forcing transgender friendly bathroom laws against the will of the people.

Schulman said he discussed playing the game at a neutral location, but North Carolina wasn't interested.

Rebuffing arguments by the law's defenders, Schroeder also noted that existing laws already protect people's privacy in restrooms.

The 2017 NBA All-Star Game was scheduled to be played in Charlotte but the NBA, citing the same concerns expressed by the two college basketball programs, pulled the game from that city and moved it to New Orleans.

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell decried the law in May.

Previously tweeting, the National Basketball Association said it was "deeply concerned that this discriminatory law runs counter to our guiding principals of equality and mutual respect and do not know what impact it will have on our ability to successfully host the 2017 All-Star game in Charlotte". "We will continue to fight that. We're going to work with the community to make the effective changes necessary long term".

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