Jay P. Holland, a principal in the Firm’s Civil Litigation Group and chair of the firm’s Labor, Employment, and Qui Tam Whistleblower practice, was quoted on July 25, 2016, in an article in Law360 concerning the National Basketball Association’s decision to relocate its 2017 All-Star game out of Charlotte, N.C. The NBA took that action in opposition to the state’s new law that restricts transgender people from using the bathroom of their choice.
The NBA’s decision is regarded as an important test case of the ability of a sports league to effect social change. The controversial law prevents municipalities in North Carolina from enacting anti-discrimination measures and forces people to use bathrooms based on the gender listed on their birth certificate.
North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory has sharply criticized people and groups that he said were outsiders trying to pressure the political leaders of his state into changing the law.
“Left-wing special interest groups have no moral authority to try [to] intimidate the large majority of American parents who agree in common-sense bathroom and shower privacy for our children,” McCrory said in a statement. “American families should be on notice that the selective corporate elite are imposing their political will on communities in which they do business, thus bypassing the democratic and legal process.”
Holland responded to these concerns in a quote that appeared in the Law360 article.
“I find it a little absurd or disingenuous for the governor to say that the NBA is not respecting the democratic process,” Holland said in the article. “They feel that a jurisdiction is acting in a discriminatory fashion, and they are entitled to say: ‘We don’t want to give you our business.’ ”
Holland was also quoted in the article as saying that the state law “puts the NBA in a very difficult and untenable position,” had the All-Star game gone on as planned. “I frankly don't know how North Carolina intends to enforce the law. Are they going to have bathroom monitors? And even then how are they going to know?”
The full Law360 article can be found at: http://www.law360.com/articles/821106/nba-tests-power-to-effect-change-with-all-star-game-move. (Please be advised that due to Intellectual Property rights full access to these articles may require registration or purchase of a subscription.)