Today, the Trump administration again seeks to gut civil rights protections for transgender people and people who have abortions.
As you may have heard, today, the Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Civil Rights, headed by anti-transgender and anti-reproductive justice activist Roger Severino, has propose new regulations for the health care rights law that was part of Obamacare, also known as Section 1557.
The proposed regulation would take us backwards so that the definition of “sex” specifically excludes transgender people and anyone seeking abortion care. It would undo the regulations from the Obama administration that are only three years old.
This is especially personal for all of us at Gender Justice because we helped to bring the first case in the nation to hold that protections based on sex in Section 1557 apply to transgender people. That case was cited by the Obama administration in its regulations.
But the fight is not over.
As horrible as the proposed regulations are, they're not really surprising. Ever since Roger Severino was appointed the chief healthcare civil rights enforcement officer, we've anticipated these new regulations. This is only the latest salvo in the administration's relentless attacks on trans rights and reproductive justice.
In the meantime, Gender Justice pushed ahead reinforcing protections through the courts. We brought another case to enforce Section 1557. We argued in Tovar v. Essentia Health that the statute itself clearly protects transgender people regardless of what the regulations might say.
Last fall, federal district court judge Donovan Frank agreed with us, ruling that insurance companies and employers must cover gender affirming care in their health care plans even if the regulations changed some day.
We will continue to fight these proposed regulations. Soon, the administration will be required to make the proposed regulations available for public comment. We will let you know when that happens and ask for your help to write comments letting the administration know how wrong proposal is.
We will also continue to use the courts to fight back against the Trump administration.
We couldn't do this without you. Thank you for your support.