NC gov. pushes for new deal for LGBT protections

North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper holds a press conference at the Executive Mansion in Raleigh, N.C., Thursday, March 30, 2017, to announce that he signed a HB142, a compromise replacement bill for HB2, that the N.C. General Assembly passed earlier in the day. (Chris Seward/The News & Observer via AP)

RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — Gov. Roy Cooper signed a non-discrimination executive order for the state of North Carolina Wednesday. It’s an action he hopes will bring the state one step closer to protecting all North Carolinians.

“We need full and comprehensive protections for the LGBT community in our state in employment, in public accommodation, so that no one is discriminated against because of who they are,” said Chris Brook, legal director of the ACLU of North Carolina.

Cooper drew criticism from some in his own party earlier this year when he signed House Bill 142, better known as the HB2 repeal compromise. This was just days before the NCAA announced future tournament sites. At the time, even Cooper said it wasn’t a perfect compromise.

Wednesday’s executive order “prohibits discrimination in the governor’s administration” and will also require certain state contractors to put non-discrimination protections in place for their employees.

“This is a step towards the reality, but we at the ACLU are not gonna step fighting until we realize further gains beyond today,” said Brook.

The governor’s office is also working to settle a lawsuit originally filed to challenge HB2. A judge has yet to sign off on the plan, which does not include the Republican legislative leaders who are also parties to the suit. The governor says the proposal is in the best interest of the state.

The North Carolina Values Coalition, a long-time supporter of HB2, called Cooper’s actions a power-grab.

CBS North Carolina reached out to Senator Phil Berger for comment, but his office told us they needed more time to review Cooper’s actions. We also reached out to House Speaker Tim Moore’s office, but have not heard back.