24 Jun New Executive Order Expands Healthcare Services for LGBTQI+ Individuals
On June 15, 2022, President Biden signed the Executive Order on Advancing Equality for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, and Intersex Individuals to expand healthcare services and increase access to gender-affirming care for the LGBTQI+ community. The order calls on Congress to pass the Equality Act, which would protect sexual orientation and gender identification under civil rights law.
The administration also aims to expand access to suicide prevention and crisis support services, and to prevent the dangerous, discredited practice of conversion therapy. The measures contained in the executive order tap into already-allocated funding and task the Department of Health and Human Services to draft policies related to protecting LGBTQ+ access to healthcare.
The order also requests the federal government to take the following actions to ensure that every person has the opportunity to live freely and with dignity:
- Combat unlawful discrimination and eliminate disparities that harm LGBTQI+ individuals and their families, and defend their rights and safety
- Expand the availability of family counseling and support programs in federally funded health, human services and child welfare programs
- Address the significant disparities that LGBTQI+ youth face in the foster care system and local child welfare agencies
- Strengthen support for LGBTQI+ students in the nation’s schools and other education and training programs
- Address barriers that LGBTQI+ individuals and families face by expanding access to comprehensive healthcare, including reproductive health
- Protect the rights of LGBTQI+ older adults
- Prevent and address LGBTQI+ homelessness and housing instability
The executive order may result in new guidance clarifying that federal funds cannot be used for conversion therapy and increasing medical provider training requirements on evidence-based care practices. Within one year, the Attorney General, Secretary of Health and Human Services, and other affected federal agencies and departments must submit an implementation progress report to the Biden Administration.