REUTERS

NCAA Returns to North Carolina After Transgender Bathroom Law Repeal

Rights groups criticized the NCAA for returning to North Carolina while its cities were still banned from passing anti-discrimination laws.

(Reuters) — The National Collegiate Athletic Association on Tuesday formally reversed course and scheduled championship games in North Carolina, returning to the state after previously stripping it of events to protest a law on transgender use of public bathrooms.


Transgender advocates immediately criticized the decision, saying although the bathroom law was repealed last month, North Carolina still discriminated against LGBT people and did not deserve to be rewarded.

The controversy started with the March 2016 approval of House Bill 2, which required transgender people to use bathrooms matching the sex on their birth certificate rather than their gender identity. In response, the NCAA disqualified North Carolina from hosting neutral-site championship events for the 2016-17 academic year.

Similar boycotts by other sports organizations, companies and entertainers cost North Carolina hundreds of millions of dollars worth of business. In a basketball-crazed state, losing events such as the NBA all-star game and big NCAA tournament games was also a blow to residents' pride.

Seeking to win back business, state lawmakers repealed the law on March 30, but they also approved a new measure banning cities from passing their own anti-discrimination protections for LGBT people until 2020, drawing outrage from civil rights advocates.

Still, the repeal of the bathroom law was enough to win over the NCAA, which announced on April 4 its board of governors would consider returning to the state. At the time the NCAA said its board would have preferred an unconditional repeal of House Bill 2 and that a majority of the board "reluctantly" decided to return to North Carolina.

On Tuesday, the NCAA selected more than 600 host sites for events to be held from the 2017-18 through 2021-22 seasons, including placing events such as men's basketball games in North Carolina.

For example, the first- and second-round men's basketball games in 2020 will be held in Greensboro.

Greensboro will also host regional women's basketball games in the championship tournament in 2019.

Rights groups criticized the NCAA for returning to North Carolina while its cities were still banned from passing anti-discrimination laws.

"By rewarding North Carolina with championship games, the NCAA has undermined its credibility and is sending a dangerous message to lawmakers across the country who are targeting LGBTQ people with discriminatory state legislation," JoDee Winterhof, a senior official with the Human Rights campaign, said in a statement.

The American Civil Liberties Union called the decision a "shame" and the anti-discrimination group Athlete Ally said it was "deeply concerning."

Read more news @ DiversityInc.com

Many Transgender Patients Not Insured for Gender-affirming Surgery

The proportion of patients getting genital surgery as part of their transition rose from 72 percent in the period from 2000 to 2005 to 84 percent from 2006 to 2011, yet 56 percent paid out of pocket.

(Reuters) — Even though a growing number of transgender patients now use insurance for gender-affirming surgery, almost half are still paying cash for procedures their health plans don't cover, a U.S. study suggests.

Read More Show Less

Sexual Orientation Top Risk for Suicidal Thoughts in College Freshmen

The results suggest that the first year of college could be an ideal time to screen all entering students for suicide risk and intervene appropriately.

(Reuters) — Nearly one third of first-year college students have thought about suicide, according to a study across eight countries, and non-heterosexual identity or feelings were the biggest risks for this kind of thinking or behavior.

Read More Show Less
Eight-year-old student Zachary Lanterman, who is home schooled, works on class work at the computer at the Pride School in Atlanta, Ga., on December 7, 2016. / REUTERS

More Schools Offering Safe Spaces for LGBTQ Youth

LGBTQ teens often do better in school and have a lower risk of substance abuse or suicide when school policies offer them lots of support with anti-harassment policies, safe spaces and student groups like gay-straight alliances.

(Reuters) — A growing number of U.S. schools are offering safe spaces for tweens and adolescents who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or questioning (LGBTQ) and prohibiting harassment based on sexual orientation or gender identity, a study suggests.

Read More Show Less

First Openly Transgender Recruit Signs Up for U.S. Military

Military officials do not know how many transgender people have begun to enlist since Jan. 1, but this is the first time one has officially signed a contract to join the military.

(Reuters) — A transgender recruit has signed a contract to join the U.S. military for the first time since a federal court ruled late last year that the military would have to accept openly transgender people, the Pentagon said on Monday.

Read More Show Less
REUTERS

Britney Spears To Be Honored for Support of Gay Community

The GLAAD Vanguard Award is given to media personalities who have promoted equality and acceptance of LGBTQ people.

(Reuters) — Pop star Britney Spears will be honored for her support of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community at an awards ceremony this year, advocacy group GLAAD said on Tuesday.

Read More Show Less

Transgender Teens May Not Get Care They Need

Among transgender youth, the teens whose gender expression most closely matched their assigned sex at birth had better overall health and fewer mental health issues.

(Reuters) — Transgender teens may be more likely to miss preventive health checkups and have untreated medical problems than their non-transgender peers, a U.S. study suggests.

Read More Show Less