Trump Signs Healthcare “Freedom to Discriminate” Against LGBTQ

Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

By Nick Duffy . May 3, 2019

The Trump administration has issued new rules that grant healthcare workers the right to discriminate based on their religious beliefs.

In a speech to conservative evangelical leaders at the White House on Thursday (May 2) to mark the National Day of Prayer, President Trump confirmed he would enact a rumored plan to scale down healthcare discrimination protections.

Donald Trump: They’ve been wanting to do that for a long time, right Mike?

The President confirmed: “Today we finalized new protections of conscience rights for physicians, pharmacists, nurses, teachers, students, and faith-based charities.”

Addressing anti-LGBT Vice President Mike Pence, he added: “They’ve been wanting to do that for a long time, right Mike? They’ve been wanting to do that for a long time.”

US Vice President Mike Pence and Karen Pence participate in a National Day of Prayer service in the Rose Garden at the White House May 02, 2019 in Washington, DC.
US Vice President Mike Pence and Karen Pence participate in a National Day of Prayer service in the Rose Garden at the White House May 02, 2019 in Washington, DC. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty))

The Department of Health and Human Services issued the new rules, extending rights for religious objection against an alleged “culture of hostility to conscience concerns in health care.”

It advises healthcare professionals: “You have the right under Federal law to decline to perform, assist in the performance of, refer for, undergo, or pay for certain healthcare-related treatments, research, or services  (such as abortion or assisted suicide, among others) that violate your conscience, religious beliefs, or moral convictions.”

GLAAD tweeted: “The Trump Administration essentially wants to hand people a license to discriminate against LGBTQ people.”

The ACLU added: “Trump’s HHS issued a rule today allowing for discrimination in health care when there is a ‘moral or religious objection.’

“Preventing people from accessing critical medical care may endanger people’s lives, especially trans people and those seeking reproductive care.”

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