While supporters of the Charlotte ordinance say there’s no documented evidence equating transgender people with predators we couldn’t disagree more. We are asking you to sign the #KeepNCSafe petition to keep our bathrooms safe.
In fact, the supporters of the ordinance said, it’s transgender people who are the victims when protections are not in place. The Charlotte Observer reported that Scott Bishop, board chairman of the Mecklenburg LGBT Political Action Committee, which worked with the city to craft the proposed ordinance changes, charged that opponents were running “a fear-based, not a fact-based” campaign that spreads misinformation. Bathroom scare tactics “are something they’re using to take the focus off the real issues,” said Chad Sevearance Turner, the president of the Charlotte Business Guild which in October changed its name to the Charlotte LGBT Chamber of Commerce.
One of the leaders behind the ordinance Severance continued, “Fortune 500 companies believe that LGBT (employees) are the best and the brightest, (Before coming to Charlotte), they’ll be looking at how their people are going to be protected from discrimination.
The Human Rights Campaign was so impressed with Chad Severance they recognized the Charlotte LGBT Chamber of Commerce the North Carolina’s Organization of the Year award at their Charlotte gala in February. This award comes on the heels of an announcement of the Chamber’s President, Chad Turner winning the Person of the Year Award by qnotes, the area’s largest LGBT newspaper and was celebrated by Mayor Jennifer Roberts, who spent her first day in office with the LGBT Charlotte Chamber. In 2015 Chad Severance married and changed his name to Chad Turner.
In 2015 Chad Severance, a convicted sex offender, gathered data and surveyed the community see if discrimination existed in Charlotte in order to help pass the Charlotte ordinance. Upon learning of the convictions, Tami Fitzgerald of the NC Values Coalition said, “Any supposed evidence provided by the (LGBT Chamber of Commerce) group is discredited. Criminal records show that Mr. Severance was arrested on three counts of “committing or attempting a lewd act upon a child under the age of 16” in the state of South Carolina, and was convicted on one count, and sentenced to ten years in jail. Sex offenders will be the beneficiaries of the proposed ordinance, because it will provide legal cover for men to enter women’s bathrooms and locker rooms. It would be unethical to accept “data” from a clearly biased and discredited institution, such as the Charlotte LGBT Chamber of Commerce and present it as fact.”
Turner secured sponsorships from the following Charlotte organizations: Foodlion (DEG), Fifth Third Bank (FITB), Wells Fargo (WFC), Liberty Mutual Insurance, JHG Financial Advisors, Le Méridien Charlotte, along with strategic partnership with the Charlotte Chamber of Commerce, Visit Charlotte, The Human Rights Campaign and EqualityNC.
Shortly after the Charlotte ordinance passed the Board at the LGBT Charlotte Chamber and Turner parted ways when these sex offenses and Turner’s convictions were made public. Turner remains an active member of the organization.