UNCW Students talk about HB2 and Transgender Visibility Day

UNCW Students talk about HB2 and Transgender Visibility Day

WILMINGTON (UNCW) - Transgender Visibility Day is recognized across the nation March 31.

Students with UNCW Pride said it's more important than ever to be visible, since the North Carolina General Assembly passed House Bill 2 last week.

Several governors have banned official state travel to North Carolina. Big businesses like Apple, Microsoft, Bank of America and American Airlines are also speaking out against HB2.

The discussion has even found its way on the Campus of UNCW.

Jerry Greenfield, Co-Founder of the popular ice cream company Ben and Jerry's, spoke at the university Wednesday night about business, but the topic intertwined with businesses taking a stand on social issues.

Greenfield is no longer with the company but agrees with the statement the company released on their website saying, "It [House Bill 2] "tramples on LGBT rights."

Students with UNCW Pride said they have been passing out information on HB2 throughout the week to educate their peers.

"Anyone can tell you that the most dangerous place for transgender people is public bathroom," said Nada Merghani, president of UNCW Pride. "It's where they have experienced the most violent assaults, physical threats, discrimination in all shapes and forms so the way this bill will effect transmen and transwomen it's violent."

The group has made buttons that say "Y'all Means All" and "#nohateinourstate" to show their support for Transgender Visibility Day and to take a stance against HB2.

"If we can't do anything in North Carolina I want to at least change the climate of UNCW," explained Secretary of UNCW Pride. "I want our campus to be a safe place for transgender students even if the rest of their state isn't."

The students said they plan to hold a peacefully rally down chancellors walk Friday at noon.

UNCW's Chancellor Zito Sartarelli addressed the campus Wednesday regarding the N.C. House Bill 2.

According to the release sent out by the Office of University Relations, Sartarelli said it was too important of a topic not to discuss and went on to say that while they haven't determined the full impact it will have on campus it is still their number one commitment to provide an inclusive environment for everyone.

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