Local Businesses React to House Bill 2

Ralph Henderson says, “It was just common sense for me, unfortunately I grew up in an era where common sense was still common!”

Henderson is one of hundreds of local business owners who reached out to Governor McCrory in support of House Bill 2.

“Nothing changed when the Governor signed House Bill 2. The businesses have the ability to put in non-discrimination practices for
hiring, for running their businesses, for their bathrooms,”says Henderson.

Despite local and national backlash over the law, Henderson says he still stands by two of its components.

“One is the bathroom issue, it really is the safety and security of women and children. The second part,  Charlotte being different from everyone else and the business owners in Charlotte not being able to set their own discrimination policies,” says Henderson.

James Kleto is the President of Central Coffee Company and says, “When I heard about the businesses that are supporting the bill, it was a little unnerving.”

Kleto says he has gender neutral restrooms at his coffee shops.

“We’ve always made it part of our business model we never going to discriminate against anybody,” says Kleto.

And says local companies should work harder to be inclusive to members of the LGBT community.

He shared this message for Governor McCrory.

“As a business owner I would ask him to rethink this and really think about everybody not just the corporate businesses that you are hearing from, but a lot of the small business owners,” says Kleto.

We found out a transgender woman was able to use the bathroom of her choice inside the popular Whisky Warehouse in Plaza Midwood.

A spokesperson didn’t want to go on camera — but did send us this statement about that woman.

Saying in part: “Janice has been welcomed with open arms at our restaurants and our company does not discriminate against the LGBT