Why you should care that the Trump administration deleted online information about sex discrimination
by Rebecca Ruiz
July 19, 2018
When President Trump nominated federal judge Brett Kavanaugh to fill a soon-to-be-vacant Supreme Court spot, liberals responded with panic and fear over the possibility that another conservative justice could lead to a fundamental rollback of equal rights, particularly for women and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people.
But the erosion of equal rights isn’t always as dramatic as a Supreme Court appointment. As the Sunlight Foundation reported Thursday, the Trump administration has removed critical language about sex discrimination from the Department of Health and Human Services (HSS) Office for Civil Rights website. The Office for Civil Rights is responsible for investigating complaints and enforcing federal civil rights laws that apply to doctors, hospitals, and other recipients of HHS funding.
Advocates say the deletion of that language could harm patients who now won’t have essential information about their right to non-discriminatory healthcare treatment. They also suggest that the administration’s decision to delete that language could be seen as a signal to health insurance companies, hospitals, and healthcare providers that certain anti-discrimination laws won’t be enforced.
Jocelyn Samuels, former director of the Office for Civil Rights at the HHS, said the deletions reflect the Trump administration’s pattern of reversing government policies and regulations that protect people from discrimination based on their sexual orientation and gender identity.