National Organization for Women (NOW)

For Immediate Release

Contact: 

Emily Imhoff, press@now.org(951) 547-1241

Religion Is No Excuse For Bigotry

HHS’s New Division of Conscience and Religious Freedom Targets Women

WASHINGTON - The Trump Administration has announced the creation of a new “conscience and religious freedom” division within the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) that will have the effect of fostering further discrimination against women, transgender individuals and others seeking full access to health care.

This dangerous move upends the core principles of medical care—the Hippocratic Oath that tells physicians, “first, do no harm,” and opens the door to medical care bigotry.

Allowing a doctor, nurse or other healthcare workers to deny medical care that goes against their so-called moral or religious beliefs would do tremendous harm, not only to individuals suffering from a medical emergency but to the fabric of society itself.

We must not tolerate a two-tier system for health care, one for “good Christians” and one for everyone else. Women have made their personal health care decisions based on their own moral and in some cases religious convictions.

The opening of this division puts in place systematic, intrusive oppression and must not be allowed to stand. If healthcare workers including doctors, feel they can not perform their professional duty they need to find other work instead of pushing their personal belief system on others. That’s what bullies do.

There’s no such thing as a religious exception to providing basic healthcare for women, LGBTQIA+ people or anyone else. This egregious act of gender bigotry must be overturned.

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The National Organization for Women (NOW) is the largest organization of feminist activists in the United States. NOW has 500,000 contributing members and 550 chapters in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.

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