(WBTV) - Cities hoping to be the host of future National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) championships are being asked to specifically outline how they will protect participants and spectators from discrimination.
The NCAA issued a statement Friday afternoon, less than 24 hours after the National Basketball Association (NBA) announced it was pulling the 2017 All-Star Game from Charlotte due to North Carolina's House Bill 2.
HB2 requires individuals to use the bathroom corresponding to the gender listed on their birth certificate in government buildings, schools and universities, and initially took away the ability of employees to sue their employers in state court for discrimination or wrongful termination.
Monday, North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory sign a bill that is slated to restore workers' ability to use state law to sue over workplace discrimination. The bill does not enhance workplace protections for sexual orientation or gender identity.
The bill came as a response to a non-discrimination ordinance passed in February by the Charlotte City Council. The ordinance broadly defined how businesses should treat gay, lesbian and transgender customers. The debate, as in other cities, focused on bathrooms.
"These potential future bidding cities must complete a questionnaire from the NCAA by Aug. 12 detailing any local anti-discrimination laws, provisions for refusal of services and other facility-specific information," the NCAA said in a statement. "Currently awarded host sites will have a separate deadline, which will be determined later, to submit this same information."
In April, the NCAA Board of Governors adopted a new requirement 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," officials said.
The policy applies to all championships, including those with sites that are awarded based on competition results, also known as non-predetermined championships.
"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 NCAA says the requirement was sparked after legislatures in several states, including North Carolina, passed laws allowing businesses or government to refuse to provide services to some people based on their sexual orientation or gender identity.