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ADF to Biden admin: ‘Gender dysphoria’ is not a covered disability

HHS building

The following quote may be attributed to Alliance Defending Freedom Senior Counsel Greg Baylor, director of the ADF Center for Religious Schools, regarding a public comment ADF attorneys submitted Monday to urge the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to reconsider and rescind its conclusion that “gender dysphoria” can be a disability and consequently covered under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, a federal law that protects qualified individuals from discrimination based on their disability. Alternatively, ADF attorneys are asking HHS to provide significantly more detail regarding how it intends to interpret and enforce Section 504, especially given the restraints imposed by the First Amendment and the Religious Freedom Restoration Act:

“HHS is hard at work to enshrine ‘gender dysphoria’ as a disability in federal law via regulation—something Congress purposely excluded from the statutory language. Not only would this move endanger the private spaces and single-sex sports teams of those who receive federal assistance, but it would also further advance the Biden administration’s attempts to force employers to adhere to the government’s preferred view, even if doing so contradicts an employer’s deeply held religious beliefs. Let’s be crystal clear: Every organization should be able to exercise its constitutional freedom to live and work in a manner consistent with its faith. Furthermore, academic institutions shouldn’t be forced to choose between staying true to their conscience and receiving federal assistance. This is blatant government overreach.”

Alliance Defending Freedom is an alliance-building, non-profit legal organization committed to protecting religious freedom, free speech, parental rights, and the sanctity of life.

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Gregory S. Baylor
Gregory S. Baylor
Senior Counsel, Director of the Center for Religious Schools
Gregory S. Baylor serves as senior counsel with Alliance Defending Freedom, where he is the director of the Center for Religious Schools and senior counsel with the Center for Public Policy.