Trump administration seeks to end Obama-era protections for LGBT patients

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LGBT Youth

Roger Severino is scrapping LGBT protections amid COVID-19

The Trump Administration is rewriting regulations to exclude LGBT people on Section 1557 of the Affordable Care Act. The change would end the current ban on health care discrimination based on sex and gender identity. Many health experts warn that rolling back these Obama-era protections could bring further harm to already-vulnerable patients.

Severino is stripping away the rights of LGBT’s and putting up hurdles to health care

Accountable for Equality has sent a memo denouncing the Trump Administration and Department of Health and Human Services civil rights chief Roger Severino for working to end critical anti-discrimination protections for LGBT patients during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Roger Severino had previously worked for the the Heritage Foundation. The Foundation has a long history of seeking to marginalize the LGBTQ community. The group has criticized bans on the anti-gay “reparative therapy” that is repeatedly discredited by science. The Heritage Foundation has anti-LGBT discriminatory views on same-sex marriage and is against all protections for trans people.

“The way Roger Severino and the Trump Administration are blatantly taking advantage of this crisis to push forward their hateful agenda and strip away common sense LGBT protections is despicable and nonsensical,” said Accountable for Equality Spokesman Chris Fleming. “We are facing an unprecedented health crisis, and rather than lead our country through this with dignity, Severino is focused on stripping away the rights of LGBT Americans and putting up additional hurdles to health care. Severino, who has made his anti-LGBT views crystal clear, has no place leading the civil rights office of HHS. In the midst of a global pandemic, HHS should be focused on more urgent issues than marginalizing a segment of Americans.”

Amidst the COVID-19 crisis, Accountable for Equality is focusing efforts to highlight those that are capitalizing on the pandemic to advance their own biased priorities that marginalize populations.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has shone a bright and unflattering light on the disparities that already exist in our healthcare system, including the barriers to care faced by the LGBT community. This move by Severino will make seeking health care even less safe for vulnerable members of the LGBT community,” said Mara Keisling, Executive Director, National Center for Transgender Equality. Implementing this HHS rule change at any time, but especially in the middle of a global health crisis, is an act of particular cruelty by Trump and Roger Severino.”