Thursday August 25th, 2016

The Vermont women's basketball team canceled a December road game against North Carolina because of concerns about the state's HB2 law, the school's athletic department announced.

The game was scheduled for Dec. 28 in Chapel Hill.

House Bill 2 is a North Carolina state law that limits anti-discrimination protections for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people. The law requires people to use public restrooms that correspond to the gender on their birth certificate.

Athletic director Jeff Schulman said the decision to cancel the game was made after a consultation with the school's coaches, the women's basketball team and university officials.

The two schools agreed to the game in late March, less than a week before HB2 became law with the deal being signed six months later.

According to the contract, which was obtained by the Burlington Free Press, Vermont was to receive $17,500 from North Carolina for making the trip to Chapel Hill. The contract also called for UNC to cover the costs for 12 hotel rooms and three meals for the team.

The NBA has already decided to move the 2017 All-Star Game out of Charlotte, N.C because of the law. The game will now take place in New Orleans on Feb. 17.

"The decision to cancel to our Dec. 28 women's basketball game at North Carolina was made as a result of concerns over the HB2 law, which prevents transgender people from using government-run bathrooms based on their gender identity," Vermont athletic director Jeff Schulman said. "We strive very hard to create an inclusive climate for our students and staff in which they all can feel safe, respected, and valued. It would be hard to fulfill these obligations while competing in a state with this law, which is contrary to our values as an athletic department and university."

- Scooby Axson

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