The NCAA announced Friday it will ask cities interested in being championship sites to specifically outline how they will protect participants and spectators from discrimination. Cities planning on bidding for future NCAA championships must complete a questionnaire by Aug. 12 that details any local anti-discrimination laws, provisions for refusal of services and other facility-specific information.
The news comes one day after the NBA announced it will not hold its All-Star Game in Charlotte, N.C., in 2017. The state of North Carolina’s House Bill 2 mandates transgender people use public restrooms corresponding to the sex listed on their birth certificates. The new law also excludes LGBT individuals from the state’s anti-discrimination protections and forbids local governments from widening LGBT protections.
In April, the NCAA’s Board of Governors instituted new requirements for sites hosting or bidding on NCAA events in all divisions. These hosts must demonstrate how they will provide an environment that is safe, healthy and free of discrimination and also safeguards the dignity of everyone involved in the event.
“We are committed to providing a championship experience within an inclusive environment for student-athletes, coaches, administrators and fans,” said Mark Lewis, NCAA executive vice president for championships and alliances. “With the Board of Governors’ direction, we are taking steps to assure that anyone associated with an NCAA championship event will be treated with fairness and respect.”
The requirement follows the recent actions of legislatures in several states, which have passed laws allowing businesses or government to refuse to provide services to some people based on their sexual orientation or gender identity.