Transgender NC woman faces challenge with women’s association

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CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- A transgender woman in Mecklenburg County said she wants to join a women’s association but was turned away after the first meeting.

WSOC reported that the Mecklenburg County Democratic Women’s Association said it is now reviewing its membership policy.

“I realize all eyes are on me, what I do it paves the way and sets and example,” said Janice Covington.

Covington said she is a Democrat, blogger and speaker for human rights of the LGBT community and is not shy about who she is. She said she believes being transgendered is not a choice.

Last month, she said she joined the Mecklenburg County Democratic Women’s Association, but was told by a group representative she could not be a member because of her gender.

“To be told that I would be better suited to be in the men’s auxiliary is really a slap in the face,” she said.

The Charlotte group said this is the first time a transgender woman has applied.

“That request for review is in process, but has in no way affected the membership status of Ms. Covington,” the organization said in a statement to WSOC.

The group said in fairness, they hope to create a consistent guideline for all chapters across the state.

“We apologize to Ms. Covington if she understood otherwise, and look forward to working with her on issues important to women, their families, and their communities,” the statement added.

As the organization enters new territory for membership, Covington said she is ready to put the incident behind her.

The Mecklenburg Democratic Women’s Association told WSOC Covington will continue to be welcome at their meetings.