Monday, August 17, 2020

Federal judge blocks Trump administration rule against trans health a day before it was to take effect

This just came in this afternoon and it proves how important the recent Bostock decision was.

From Buzzfeed:

A federal judge on Monday blocked a Trump administration rule that would allow healthcare providers to discriminate against transgender individuals, one day before the rule was set to take effect. 
US District Judge Frederic Block found that the landmark US Supreme Court ruling earlier this summer expanding workplace protections for LGBTQ individuals applied in a legal fight over anti-discrimination provisions of the Affordable Care Act. It's one of the first cases to apply the Supreme Court's decision to other areas of federal law — in this case, healthcare. 
The Supreme Court ruled that workplace discrimination based on "sex" included discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. Block, who sits in the federal district court in Brooklyn, found that the administration's plan to remove gender identity from the ACA's anti-discrimination provisions could not stand in light of the Supreme Court's decision in Bostock v. Clayton County. 
"The Court reiterates the same practical concern it raised at oral argument: When the Supreme Court announces a major decision, it seems a sensible thing to pause and reflect on the decision’s impact," Block wrote. "Since HHS has been unwilling to take that path voluntarily, the Court now imposes it." 
The case before Block involves Section 1557 of the Affordable Care Act, which prohibits discrimination in health programs that receive federal funding. Under the Obama administration, the Department of Health and Human Services adopted rules in 2016 that made clear that Section 1557 applied to discrimination based on gender identity. 
A federal judge previously blocked the Obama-era rules from being enforced and sent the matter back to the Department of Health and Human Services. The Trump administration moved to get rid of the gender identity protections altogether. On June 12, the administration announced a final rule that would strip away the gender identity language.

For more details, check out the Buzzfeed article in its entirety.

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