Lunch Break (4/8/16): Campus protests follow Spellings HB2 enforcement announcement

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Charlotte-based organization Campus Pride is calling for students to continue taking action after University of North Carolina system President Margaret Spellings' announcement on Thursday of her plans to enforce HB2 across 17 college campuses in the UNC system was met with protests on campuses at UNC Charlotte, Appalachian State (see below) and other state schools. Encouraging students to band together, Campus Pride executive director Shane Windmeyer wrote, “Students in the UNC system will not allow their voice to be silenced by the UNC system President, the Governor or the State Legislature. There will be more protests and rallies.” UNC Charlotte Chancellor Dubois issued a statement this morning clarifying what HB2 means for UNCC students: “the Act does not impact the University’s existing nondiscrimination policies,” and “the law does not contain any provisions concerning enforcement. UNC Charlotte will continue to label multiple-occupancy restrooms and changing facilities for single-sex use with appropriate signage.”

A Union County elementary school closed today after 30 percent of students reported symptoms consistent with the Norovirus. The announcement comes just days after a nearby Matthews school was forced to close when “dozens” of staff members developed Norovirus symptoms following a catered staff lunch. Symptoms — which can include vomiting, diarrhea, cramps, fever, and loss of taste — usually appear 12 to 48 hours after exposure. (WBTV Web Staff) In an unrelated incident, South Mecklenburg High School was evacuated this morning when school officials detected the smell of smoke in an administrative office. No statement on what caused the smell, but the school was safely evacuated. (WCNC Staff) 

Sections of Brookshire Boulevard and I-85 got an unintended makeover this morning. A flatbed truck carrying a large container of paint was driving onto the I-85 ramp from Brookshire Boulevard when the load fell. Nearly 300 gallons of white latex paint spilled out, completely covering the road. NCDOT has closed the effected lanes, but said they will wait for the paint to dry before beginning the clean-up. (Fox46 Staff) 

A 22-year-old Charlotte man was arrested in Gaston County this morning after leading police on a high-speed chase. The man, identified as Jaylin Griffith, was driving on Dallas-Cherryville Highway when police noticed he had no tail lights. When police attempted to pull Griffith over, he hit the gas, reaching speeds of 120 mph on the 55 mile-per-hour road. Police caught up and were able to arrest Griffith, who was found in possession of marijuana and other paraphernalia. He faces multiple charges and is being held in Gaston County on $50,000 bond. (WSOC Staff) 

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