EQFL's Statement On ACC's Decision To Move Championship Game to Orlando
Equality Florida calls on its government to pass statewide LGBTQ protections
ORLANDO, FL - The Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) has just announced that they will move their championship football game from North Carolina to Orlando, Florida due to North Carolina's anti-LGBTQ law (HB 2).
The ACC joined the NCAA and NBA in standing up for LGBTQ equality and relocating championship games in response to North Carolina's discriminatory House Bill 2. The ACC's decision will cost the state an estimated $32.5 million, adding to the hundreds of millions of dollars in economic losses that the deeply discriminatory legislation has cost North Carolina.
The City of Orlando has a 100-point score on Human Rights Campaign's Municipal Equality Index, demonstrating the breadth of its commitment to LGBTQ equality. Orlando's fully-inclusive nondiscrimination ordinance explicitly protects Orlando residents and visitors from discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
Equality Florida’s Public Policy Director Hannah Willard provided the following statement:
"We are thrilled the ACC chose the City Beautiful as the new location for the league’s 2016 championship football game. This decision sends a strong message that LGBTQ inclusion is good for business and will be rewarded by institutions that value fairness.
This decision should encourage Florida's governor and legislature to follow Orlando's lead and take proactive steps to protect all LGBTQ Floridians and visitors. This is a unique opportunity for Florida to affirm its commitment to diversity and inclusion and attract even more business to the Sunshine State.
Our legislature should pass the bipartisan Florida Competitive Workforce Act to update existing state law and protect all LGBTQ Floridians from discrimination, and Governor Scott should issue an executive order extending protections to LGBTQ state employees. Florida's government can seize this opportunity to signal to other businesses who left North Carolina in the wake of HB 2 that Florida is open for business to everyone."