January 27,2021

Press Contact:

Nicole L'Esperance (202) 224-4515

Wyden Urges Biden Administration to Immediately Halt Trump HHS Rule That Would Allow Taxpayer-Funded Discrimination Nationwide

Washington, D.C. – Senate Finance Committee Incoming Chairman Ron Wyden, D-Ore., urged the Biden administration to halt implementation of a Trump-era Health and Human Services Department final rule that would allow taxpayer-funded discrimination. The final rule could make it difficult for vulnerable populations, like LGBTQIA+ individuals and religious minorities, to access vital programs and services funded by HHS – including foster care and adoption, youth homelessness, pre-K programs, public health programs and more.

In a letter to Acting HHS Secretary Norris W. Cochran, Wyden wrote, “I am confident that your careful appraisal of this Trump final rule will reveal many of the harms it would cause throughout our great nation, providing ample ground for you to amend or rescind it and enforce Obama-era nondiscrimination protections instead… [this] final rule would have severe consequences for children and families in the child welfare system.”

Wyden pointed out that if this final rule is allowed to go into effect on February 11, 2021, it would reduce the number of available foster and adoptive homes and that children may be forced into homes that are hostile to their own beliefs and identities.

Wyden concluded, “I appreciate how President Biden has encouraged agencies including HHS to identify all rules published hastily in the final hours of the Trump Administration. I urge you to use this guidance to delay the effective date of RIN 0991-AC16 and all other harmful Trump discriminatory regulations in HHS’ purview.”   

A copy of this letter is available here