Politics

HRC President Alphonso David on how Joe Biden & Kamala Harris should advance LGBTQ rights

Alphonso David
Alphonso DavidPhoto: Screenshot

The Human Rights Campaign has released the Blueprint For Positive Change, which includes 85 individual policy recommendations for the Biden/Harris administration that would ensure the protection and advancement of LGBTQ+ rights.

“We wanted to make sure to take the full scope of executive orders and regulations that have been issued by the Trump administration, do a comprehensive review of those regulations to understand the impact on the LGBTQ community, and seek their reversal,” HRC President, Alphonso David, told LGBTQ Nation. “Because unfortunately, in most cases they had such a disproportionately negative impact on LGBTQ people.”

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One recommendation David hopes to see prioritized on day one is ensuring the implementation of the Supreme Court’s Bostock v. Clayton County decision, which says that federal law prohibits discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity in employment.

“The Trump administration has failed to implement the Bostock decision,” David said.

Other priorities David mentioned include revising the restrictions banning transgender people from serving in the military, ending discrimination against gay and bisexual blood donors, and reversing discriminatory healthcare regulations.

The Human Rights Campaign is currently in the midst of a legal battle with the administration over a regulation published by the Department of Health and Human Services that removed anti-discrimination protections from the Affordable Care Act.

We won a preliminary injunction, so those regulations have not gone into effect,” said David, “but we’re still in litigation, so we want to make sure the Biden/Harris administration reverses those regulations so they never go into effect.”

The blueprint doesn’t only focus on reversing Trump’s policies, though. David emphasized that it also seeks to further advance LGBTQ+ rights.

These more long-term goals include appointing LGBTQ elected officials, ambassadors, judges, and justices; uniformly incorporating sexual orientation and gender identity into federal surveys; and establishing interagency working groups to address the systemic violence against the transgender community and protect and support LGBTQ rights around the world.

The Blueprint for Positive Change is in the hands of the Biden/Harris administration, and David is confident the team will listen.

“We all know that Joe Biden and Kamala Harris share our views that the LGBTQ community has been under attack by Donald Trump,” he said, “and we deserve recognition and respect under the law. I’m heartened to know we have two elected officials who see our community and respect our community, so we’re not going to be fighting them, we’re going to be working with them, and that’s a key change from the past four years.”

In addition to policy changes, David believes the Biden/Harris administration can help shift the national ethos surrounding LGBTQ rights.

“We have four years of regressive, discriminatory rhetoric and policies that unfortunately some have accepted as acceptable, and it’s not. It’s not acceptable, and I think the Biden/Harris administration can certainly change the tone.”

The incoming administration has the power to foster a national atmosphere of respect, recognition, and equal protection, he said.

“Under the Biden/Harris administration, I’m looking forward to seeing the LGBTQ community treated with dignity. I’m looking forward to a federal administration that sets the national tone that LGBTQ people should be recognized as contributing members of our society and deserving of equal treatment under the law.”

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