President Joe Biden signed a historic executive order aimed at combating a shocking number of anti-LGBTQ bills that are being introduced in states across the country.
The order aims to curb discrimination against transgender youth and to dry up federal funding for the extremely controversial and condemned practice of “conversion therapy”.
The executive order comes during Pride month. It asks the federal health and department agencies to expand access to gender-affirming care, and find new ways to counter the high amount of bills passed in states by conservative lawmakers this year that ban treatments for transgender youth. It will also advance LGBTQ-inclusive learning environments within U.S. schools.
The order will curb federal funding for the debunked practice of “conversion therapy”, and asks federal agencies to ensure that programs funded by the government do not offer any conversion therapy.
It also asks the Federal Trade Commission to consider whether the extremely condemned practice constitutes an unfair or deceptive act.
Conversion therapy has been condemned by nearly every leading U.S. medical association. It tries to force LGBTQ youth to change their sexual orientation.
The executive order comes during Pride Month and shows a fight against a rising and record number of anti-LGBTQ bills introduced across the country by state governments. There are currently more than 320 anti-LGBTQ bills introduced in states.
Many of the anti-gay bills signed into law recently aim to limit access to gender-affirming care for transgender youth and prohibit trans girls and women from competing on girls’ sports teams. They also bar the instruction of LGBTQ issues in school.
Twenty-four laws like this have been signed-in 13 states.
At the signing ceremony Wednesday, Biden said the U.S. is in a battle for the soul of the nation. He also delivered a message to the youth of America, saying, “Just be you. You are loved. You are understood. You do belong.”