RALEIGH, N.C. — Gov. Pat McCrory’s office took no position Thursday on a set of bills that could expand workplace non-discrimination protections for state employees and teachers.
“The Governor will let the legislative process work and consider the bill once it gets to his desk,” McCrory Communications Director Kim Genardo told qnotes via email.
Three bills introduced in the legislature would add sexual orientation and gender identity to the State Personnel Act’s non-discrimination provisions. One of the bills, introduced this week, would extend those protections to all the state’s teachers and other school staff.
McCrory was criticized by the state Democratic Party’s leader this week for his seemingly hands-off approach to the legislature. The governor had told Raleigh’s WRAL that “you’ve got to let the process work” when refusing to take a position on several controversial pieces of legislation.
“I didn’t run on a bill to extend the period to get a divorce, or motorcycle helmets or the list goes on,” McCrory told the news station. “Let the legislature go through its process.”
At the same time, McCrory has been an outspoken proponent of several other measures and told The Associated Press this week that he supported a voter identification bill currently under consideration.
“It’s evident that our Governor wants to have it both ways, will he lead or won’t he? North Carolinians don’t need a Governor who picks and chooses when it’s convenient to stand up for them,” North Carolina Democratic Party Chairman Randy Voller said in a statement on Monday.
Neither Speaker of the House Thom Tillis nor Senate President Pro Tempore Phil Berger have taken a position on the bills.
Several city and county governments across the state already prohibit anti-LGBT discrimination in public employment.