Washington, D.C. — Today, the Trump administration issued broad guidance that would allow government employees as well as federal contractors and grantees receiving taxpayer dollars to discriminate against groups of Americans based on sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, or marital status by asserting a religious objection that will exempt them from compliance with federal laws, rules, and regulations. In response, Neera Tanden, president and CEO of the Center for American Progress, issued the following statement:
The new guidance from the Trump administration is a gross perversion of religious liberty used to justify sweeping taxpayer-funded discrimination against individuals based on their sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, sexual orientation, race, and ZIP code.
It’s clear that after failing to rip care away from millions of Americans this summer, President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence are determined to use every tool at their disposal to undermine equality in this country—and that includes blocking women of all backgrounds and faiths from getting affordable birth control.
In addition, today, the Trump administration announced two rules that together would severely undermine the contraception coverage mandate. The rules would allow any individual or organization—whether it be a private company, university, or insurer—to deny no-cost contraceptive coverage based on religion or moral objection.
Based on data obtained by CAP from the Department of Health and Human Services, between January, 2014 and March, 2016, more than half of the entities listed as receiving the birth control accommodation from the federal government were for-profit companies, and this new expansion could lead to even more employers seeking an exemption. The two new rules would allow any individual or organization—whether it be a private company, university, or insurer—to deny no-cost contraceptive coverage based on religion or moral objection.
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