N. Carolina governor moves to block conversion therapy funds

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ABOVE: N.C. Gov. Roy Cooper addresses lawmakers in July. Photo courtesy Gov. Cooper’s Facebook page.

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) | North Carolina’s state health department is barred from allowing public funds to pay for conversion therapy for minors, a controversial practice aimed at changing young LGBTQ people’s sexual orientations, under an order signed Friday by Gov. Roy Cooper.

Advocacy groups praised the Democratic governor’s executive order as a pioneering step to restrict the therapy in the U.S. South.

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Transgender woman arrested in North Carolina after bathroom dispute escalates

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SHELBY, N.C. (AP) | The Denny’s restaurant chain wants its customers to know that they can use the bathroom of their gender identity, nationwide, after a transgender woman was arrested in North Carolina.

News outlets say a man called police when the transgender woman used the same bathroom as his wife at a Denny’s in Shelby, North Carolina.

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North Carolina sued again over transgender rights

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DURHAM, N.C. (AP) | North Carolina is being sued again over its treatment of transgender people, as state employees argue that their health plan violated federal law by dropping coverage of medically necessary procedures.

The new lawsuit comes amid unresolved litigation over North Carolina’s so-called bathroom bill and the law that replaced it.

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Catholic school cancels class over protest of lesbian guest

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DURHAM, N.C. (AP) | A Catholic school in North Carolina invited a black lesbian alumna to speak at a Black History Month event, but canceled the event and classes due to threats of protest.

The Herald-Sun reports Immaculata Catholic School canceled classes Feb. 8 after officials learned “a number of groups” planned to protest the talk by Durham councilwoman Vernetta Alston. Alston said Feb. 7 that the school’s move sends the message that black voices can be canceled.

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Police: 2 assault transgender woman in N. Carolina bathroom

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RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) | Police in North Carolina say two women sexually assaulted a transgender woman at a Raleigh bar.

News outlets report 38-year-old Amber Harrell and 31-year-old Jessica Fowler are charged with second-degree kidnapping and sexual battery. Both were released on a $50,000 and a $30,000 bond respectively.

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Judge rules HB2 deal doesn’t impair bathroom access for trans people

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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A federal judge has allowed a lawsuit against the compromise over North Carolina’s anti-LGBT House Bill 2 to continue, but found the new law doesn’t inhibit bathroom access to transgender people in the state.

U.S. District Judge Thomas Schroeder, a George W. Bush appointee, ruled Sunday night the challenge to House Bill 142 can proceed in so far it pertains Section 3 of the law, which prohibits municipalities from enacting ordinances regulating private employment practices or regulating public accommodations until December 1, 2020.

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Anderson Cooper debunks hurricane conspiracy photo tweeted by Donald Trump Jr.

By : MARIAH COOPER OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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Anderson Cooper devoted nearly 10 minutes of his live CNN broadcast on Monday to debunking a hurricane conspiracy photo that was shared by Donald Trump Jr.

“It’s a shame that CNN’s ratings are down 41%. What’s worse is there’s a simple solution that they refuse to accept. Stop Lying to try to make @realDonaldTrump look bad,” Trump Jr. tweeted along with a photo which shows Cooper standing waist-deep in water while filming a report for CNN. A crew member is seen standing above him in much shallower water.

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Man accused of attacking transgender woman in South Carolina

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CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) | A man is accused of brutally attacking a transgender woman and her sister as the two women left a bar and restaurant district in South Carolina.

The Post and Courier reports 30-year-old Christopher Lamar Price was arrested Tuesday and charged with second-degree assault and battery. Authorities have classified the attack as bias-motivated. Charleston police say Price used slurs about the woman’s gender identity before punching her early one morning last month.

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Gay-friendly Apple weighs North Carolina despite LGBTQ laws

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RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — Gay-rights advocates are divided on whether to cheer or bemoan a potential marriage between the state of North Carolina and one of the global corporations most friendly to LGBTQ workers and causes.

Feelings remain raw over North Carolina’s so-called bathroom bill, which prompted a boycott campaign. Many advocates remain frustrated that a legislative compromise that put an end to the controversy still allows discrimination against them.

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Anchorage voters first in the nation to reject anti-trans bathroom bill

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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Voters in Alaska’s largest city are on track to becoming the first in the U.S. to defeat a so-called bathroom bill in a referendum that asked them to require people using public bathrooms and locker rooms consistent with their gender at birth.

The initiative asked Anchorage’s voters to repeal an ordinance passed in 2015 that prevented discrimination based on sexual orientation and added a clause that would have prevented transgender people from using bathrooms and locker rooms corresponding to their gender identities.

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Gay-friendly church in North Carolina suffers more vandalism

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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — A gay-friendly church in North Carolina’s largest city has been vandalized again.

Media outlets reported that officials with Wedgewood Church in Charlotte said the front doors were spray-painted with a misspelled, derogatory phrase late Tuesday or early Wednesday.

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Lawsuit: Sam’s Club discriminated against transgender worker

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A transgender woman said in a lawsuit Wednesday that she was called “it” and “thing” by co-workers and then wrongfully fired from a North Carolina Sam’s Club store after repeatedly complaining about harassment.

The federal lawsuit by Charlene Bost seeks unspecified monetary damages and asks the court to order the big box retailer to train employees to prevent future harassment of transgender workers. It says Bost was wrongfully fired in 2015 from the Kannapolis store in retaliation for her complaints.

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