The Dallas Stars have become the first professional sports organization to publicly oppose a “bathroom bill” proposed in Texas.
Jim Lites, the team’s president and CEO, released a statement on behalf of the Stars Wednesday afternoon.
“The Dallas Stars [organization] stands strongly opposed to any legislation perceived as discriminatory, including proposed bathroom legislation. We welcome fans from all over the globe, and our roster boasts players from half a dozen countries.
“Dallas welcomes all, and we welcome all.”
Lites’ statement makes reference to the 2018 NHL Draft, which is scheduled to be held in Dallas.
“We’re thrilled that Dallas will host the NHL Draft next year, and we’re grateful that the NHL sees the true Dallas that we know and love, a Dallas that is friendly and vibrant,” the statement reads. “Dallas will be a wonderful host city and we’re grateful for the NHL’s business.”
The Dallas Cowboys have been rumored to be against the bathroom bill, but have not taken a public stance against it. Jerry Jones has aspirations of hosting the NFL Draft and many thought this year’s draft party at The Star in Frisco was somewhat of a trial run.
Similar bathroom bill legislation in North Carolina prompted the NCAA to ban activities from the state, including 2016-17 tournament games. That ban has been lifted after the legislation was partially repealed earlier this year.
After multiple failed attempts to make the legislation -- which would restrict the use of public restrooms based on biological sex -- Texas Gov. Greg Abbott brought the effort back in a special session last month.
Support for the bill has dwindled during the special session. In the regular session, 80 of the House’s 150 members were on board. With 12 days to go in the special session, that number stood at 49.