WASHINGTON — Today, the Human Rights Campaign ( HRC ) blasted the Trump-Pence Administration's creation of a taxpayer-funded task force as part of their ongoing campaign to license discrimination against LGBTQ people in the public square. Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced the creation of the task force this morning at the U.S. Department of Justice alongside anti-LGBTQ extremists from Alliance Defending Freedom and the Colorado baker who refused to serve a gay couple in violation of the state's nondiscrimination law. It will be led by Jesse Panuccio, who was an attorney in 2010 for supporters of Proposition 8, California's same-sex marriage ban.
"This taxpayer funded task force is yet another example of the Trump-Pence White House and Jeff Sessions sanctioning discrimination against LGBTQ people," said HRC Legal Director Sarah Warbelow. "Over the last 18 months, Donald Trump, Mike Pence and Jeff Sessions have engaged in a brazen campaign to erode and limit the rights of LGBTQ people in the name of religion. The Attorney General standing shoulder-to-shoulder this morning with anti-LGBTQ extremists tells you everything you need to know about what today's announcement was really all about."
Today's announcement is the latest effort in an 18-month campaign by the Trump-Administration to license discrimination against LGBTQ people for so-called 'religious' reasons. Last year, Donald Trump issued an Executive Order directing Jeff Sessions to look across the federal government and assess ways in which the administration could license discrimination at government agencies. In January, the Department of Health and Human Services announced the creation of a so-called "Conscience" Division, empowering health care providers to discriminate against LGBTQ people. The Trump Administration has also proposed rule permitting health care providers—doctors, nurses, and even non medical support staff like receptionists—to deny even potentially life-saving care to LGBTQ people, women, and other vulnerable communities on the basis of the worker's personal beliefs.
HRC has been chronicling the Trump-Pence Administration's onslaught of attacks on the LGBTQ community here: www.hrc.org/timelines/trump .
The Human Rights Campaign is America's largest civil rights organization working to achieve equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer people. HRC envisions a world where LGBTQ people are embraced as full members of society at home, at work and in every community.