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TALLAHASSEE – The Florida Department of Health, yielding to the wishes of the overtly discriminatory DeSantis administration, today released proposed rule changes that, contrary to all medical best practices, would deny gender verification assistance to Florida residents of all ages who rely on Medicaid. The Human Rights Campaign (HRC), the country’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ+) advocacy organization, has denounced a blatantly political move to ensure that best care decisions are independent of healthcare professionals and patients. .

“With this rule change proposal, the DeSantis administration once again signals what it thinks it knows better than Florida residents and healthcare providers,” said Sarah Warbelow, legal director of the Human Rights Campaign. “The alleged rationale behind these latest moves to deny medical care to transgender people has been exposed repeatedly since the attempt was first made public in April. The Florida Department of Health is deliberately misrepresenting research, ignoring evidence, and perpetuating bias. At the same time, they put the state between patients and doctors solely for political reasons. This rule will harm thousands of Florida residents if it goes into effect and should be repealed immediately.”

Today’s Denial of Care Action approximately 9,000 transgender Florida residents are just the latest step in the DeSantis administration’s ongoing campaign to control the lives of LGBTQ+ people in the state and create a climate of hostility towards people based solely on their sexual orientation or gender identity.

After the preliminary report was released in April, HRC responded with a revised version that exposed the lies and misinterpretations that abound in the two-page document. HRC response noted that the preliminary report drew inaccurate conclusions from the cited study, used outdated terminology, took data out of context, and selected misleading data. To learn more about gender-affirming care, see the HRC fact sheet and video.

The AHCA’s action follows Governor Ron DeSantis’ signing of the Don’t Say Gay or Transgender Bill and the Stop WOKE Act earlier this spring.

The Don’t Say Gay or Trans bill aims to silence teachers about LGBTQ+ issues or people, further stigmatizing and marginalizing LGBTQ+ children and undermining existing protections for LGBTQ+ students. The legislation, which has caused major backlash from educators and students across Florida and the country, prevents teachers from providing a safe, inclusive classroom for all students.

The “Stop WOKE Law” restricts protected speech in the workplace and classroom by censoring honest dialogue about systemic racism, gender and racial discrimination. The law also amends Florida’s employment discrimination laws to give workers the ability to file discrimination lawsuits against an employer engaging in training or discussions about black history, LGBTQ+ issues, and other concepts of injustice and discrimination.

TThe Human Rights Campaign is America’s largest human rights organization working to achieve equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and gay people. HRC represents a world where LGBTQ+ people are considered full members of society at home, at work and in every community..

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