Atheists Denounce Trump Administration’s Healthcare Exemption Rule
For Immediate Release
Sarah Henry, (202) 238-9088 ext. 105, firstname.lastname@example.org
(Washington, D.C., May 2, 2019) – Leaders at the American Humanist Association expressed outrage at today’s announcement from the Trump administration allowing healthcare workers to refuse to provide necessary services if the employee holds a religious or conscientious objection.
“This rule unconscionably promotes religious prejudice above basic human rights,” explained AHA Executive Director Roy Speckhardt. Speckhardt continued, “Valuing religious restrictions over people’s right to healthcare is morally reprehensible.”
Today’s rule, issued by the Department of Health and Human Services’ Office for Civil Rights, is part of a larger push towards protecting individual religious freedom at any cost. Most often targeting LGBTQ and nontheist communities, the latest move endangers people of all faiths and philosophies’ access to critical, and potentially lifesaving care. The guidance is designed to exempt healthcare workers who have even indirect involvement in any procedure to which the employee holds a religious or conscientious objection.
“This rule is rooted in religious bigotry,” said Matthew Bulger, legislative director at the American Humanist Association. “The Trump administration has consistently displayed hostility to human dignity – instead preferring to promote religious privilege. Today’s action is no exception.”
The American Humanist Association (AHA) works to protect the rights of humanists, atheists, and other nontheistic Americans. The AHA advances the ethical and life-affirming worldview of humanism, which—without beliefs in gods or other supernatural forces—encourages individuals to live informed and meaningful lives that aspire to the greater good of humanity.