Yesterday we told you of our plans to challenge President Trump’s Executive Order if it sanctioned discrimination against women, LGBTQ people, and religious minorities. And we weren’t the only ones with plans to do so. We were part of a broad and powerful opposition that was ready to fight – and that was too much of a threat.
This morning, Trump signed a “religious freedom” order that takes a significant step back from the version that leaked in February. However, though the revised order doesn’t expressly target the LGBTQ community, it still targets ALL people seeking reproductive health care.
Today’s Executive Order does not do anything immediate. Instead, it directs the federal government to consider making new rules that will allow religious objectors to the Affordable Care Act’s preventive services mandate – the one that requires health insurance plans to cover birth control without a co-pay – to stand between their employees and the essential health care they need.
This attack on health care follows up on the Administration’s actions earlier this week to unwind critical health care protections for transgender people. It also came just hours before the House voted to further restrict health care access in a move that disproportionately harms people who can become pregnant and low-income people.
Legal Voice has long advocated for your right to access the health care you need when you need it, regardless of your employer’s – or your provider’s – religious beliefs. This attack is part of a disturbing trend of putting the religious beliefs of one person over the basic human rights of another.
So what are we doing now? We are preparing, with our communities and allies, for the next attack on our fundamental rights. We will be ready to defend your rights and rights of everyone in the Northwest states, especially in light of recent calls from Congress for sweeping measures to “protect the religious liberty” of individuals and companies.
And when the Administration tries to allow more claims of religion to strip away your rights and deny you the health care you need, we’ll be there.