Gay Rights Group Declines BofA Sponsorship Over Repeal Of HB2

May 8, 2017

One of the nation's largest gay rights groups plans to turn down $325,000 from Bank of America this year. That's because of the bank's role in brokering a compromise, which the group opposes, to repeal HB2. 

The Human Rights Campaign doesn't accept corporate sponsorships from companies whose actions, the group says, undermine LGBT equality. That's the group's verdict on Bank of America's efforts this spring. 

Credit Jennifer Lang / WFAE

Two bank executives, the head of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina, and a few other business leaders helped broker a compromise among lawmakers to repeal HB2. But it wasn't the clean repeal the Human Rights Campaign wanted.

The new law prohibits local governments from adopting non-discrimination ordinances until December 2020 and it says the state legislature regulates who has access to bathrooms and locker rooms. Bank of America has already given the HRC $25,000 this year. The group says it plans to return that and reject another $300,000 it expected to receive from the bank later this year.   

The Human Rights Campaign also cut Bank of America and Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina's scores in the group's annual Corporate Equality Index. Both companies received the highest score last year. A Bank of America spokesman says the company supports LGBT equality. He pointed to the banks public opposition to HB2, its long-time domestic partner benefits, and coverage for medically necessary treatment for transgender employees.