Charlotte approves LGBT protections in 7-4 vote

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CHARLOTTE, N.C. — The Charlotte City Council has approved new legal protections for gay, lesbian and transgender residents in a 7-4 vote.

The Charlotte Observer reported that the decision could likely prompt action by the General Assembly.

Nearly 150 people spoke for and against the expanded ordinance and the debate got emotional on both sides.

The changes mean that Charlotte can’t discriminate against members of the LGBT community and applies to places of public accommodation such as taxis, restaurants and bars.

The most controversial part of the ordinance is that it would allow transgender people to use either the men’s or women’s bathroom.