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Governor Roy Cooper Thursday signed into law a bill which a Roanoke Rapids couple pushed for passage.

The governor signed House Bill 642 — the Down Syndrome Organ Transplant Nondiscrimination Act — at Halifax Community College in Weldon after making an announcement on Roseburg’s Roanoke Valley Lumber project.

"This important legislation ensures there is no discrimination against people with disabilities when life saving organ transplants occur,” the governor said.

“It means so much,” said Robin Matthews, who with her husband Justin lobbied for the bill. “It’s been a long process. It’s been amazing. I’m really happy he signed the bill. I hope it makes a difference in everybody’s lives.”

As Cooper signed the bill, Bethany, the Matthews’ daughter, gently touched Cooper’s cheek.

The bill was introduced by state representatives Michael Wray, Pat McElraft, John Bradford and Donny Lambeth.

The bill, which was introduced in April, seeks to prohibit discrimination against individuals based on their disability when seeking an organ transplant.

This legislation upholds and enforces rights established in the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990.