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In a single day, North Carolina drafted, voted on, and passed into law one of the worst laws on LGBT rights ever seen.

In the last year, "religious protection" bills, such as the one that passed in Indiana and is awaiting the governor's signature in Georgia, were met with a wave of condemnation from the private sector. Businesses threatened to move their business elsewhere if discriminatory laws were not scuttled.

But if the those bills were bad, North Carolina's is worse. Beyond its obvious transphobic nature, it also prevents municipalities from adopting any anti-discrimination ordinances as well as minimum wage controls beyond what the state and federal government mandate. So will U.S. companies stand up to condemn it the way they have other anti-LGBT laws?

A business that threatened a boycott over anti-LGBT bills in Indiana and Georgia should, at a minimum, also do so in North Carolina. Because of how quickly this law was rammed through the state Legislature, local businesses are only starting to catch up with the bill.

We checked up on some of the larger companies that took action in other states that also do business in North Carolina to see if they would do the same now that the transgender community there is in trouble.



The company's objections to Georgia's religious freedom law mainly centered around threats to stop using locations in the state for its films. There do not appear to be any Disney films shot recently in North Carolina. But the company does maintain an ESPN office in Charlotte, including the headquarters of its ESPNU, ESPN Events, and SEC Network operations.

[Disclosure: Fusion is partly owned by ABC, which is owned by Walt Disney, which owns ESPN.]


Current status: No public comments. We e-mailed Disney communications to get their stance.


Intel CEO Brian Krzanich took to Twitter to personally condemn Georgia's religious freedom law.


Intel's website lists the company as keeping an office in Cary, N.C., likely from the company's purchase last year of Saffron, an artificial intelligence company.

Current status: Nothing from Krzanich yet. We submitted a request for comment using Intel's press relations website.


Dow Chemical

The company has opposed religious freedom laws in multiple states, including West Virginia, Georgia, and Louisiana. According to its website, it has a location in Charlotte.

Current status: Through its public policy Twitter account, Dow Chemical opposed HB 2 both before and after its passage.



Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff has aggressively criticized laws that have curtailed LGBT rights in multiple states. The company's website does not list a North Carolina office, but has about 12 open job listings for remote employees based in the state on its website.


Current status: Benioff has come out strongly against the North Carolina law, telling the Huffington Post that it caught him by surprise. He told the Post he planned to lobby Bank of America to oppose the law as well. The bank has since issued a statement in support of nondiscrimination policies.

Live Nation

The CEO of the entertainment company also expressed his opposition to Georgia's religious freedom law on Twitter.


The company's website lists two special events venues in North Carolina: The Ritz in Raleigh and The Fillmore Charlotte.

Current response: Nothing from Rapino yet. We e-mailed Live Nation's media contact to get more information.


Update: Live Nation responded to our e-mail to say had no comment on the North Carolina law.


Yelp CEO Jeremy Stoppelman left a very bad review for any states that would adopt religious freedom laws in a blog post last year:

I hope that in the future the legislatures in the nineteen states that have these laws on the books will reconsider their actions. In the mean time, Yelp will make every effort to expand its corporate presence only in states that do not have these laws allowing for discrimination on the books.


More recently, Stoppelman called for Georgia's law to be vetoed.

The company's website lists positions in Asheville, N.C., as well as Greensboro/Winston-Salem.


Current response: A Yelp spokesperson sent us the following statement:

At the heart of Yelp’s mission is giving consumers the ability to find great local businesses while making sure that the consumer remains protected. We believe that every consumer has a right to be served by a business without fear of discrimination.

We are deeply saddened by this law in North Carolina and fear it will have a negative impact on both customers and local businesses in the state.

Yelp will continue to stand strong in support of the LGBT community and equality for all consume



The league released a statement last week saying Georgia's religious freedom law could endanger an ongoing campaign to bring a future Super Bowl to Atlanta. The NFL has a single football franchise in Charlotte, the Carolina Panthers. There currently are no plans to hold a Super Bowl in the state.

Current status: The League hasn't made any direct comments on North Carolina. Its statement to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution regarding the Georgia law said:

NFL policies emphasize tolerance and inclusiveness, and prohibit discrimination based on age, gender, race, religion, sexual orientation, or any other improper standard. Whether the laws and regulations of a state and local community are consistent with these policies would be one of many factors NFL owners may use to evaluate potential Super Bowl host sites.


That would appear to apply for North Carolina as well.