The Trump administration is preparing to roll back an Obama-era rule that allows transgender people to claim sex discrimination based on gender identity.
Under the old rule, biological men could claim sex discrimination if they identified as women.
The Health and Human Services Department (HHS) announced the reversal Friday. The new rule will take 60 days to go into effect and is expected to face staunch opposition and significant legal challenges from the LGBT community.
The Office of Civil Rights (OCR) said in a statement that the Obama-era regulation runs “contrary” to the Religious Freedom Restoration Act and the Administrative Procedure Act.
“When Congress prohibited sex discrimination, it did so according to the plain meaning of the term, and we are making our regulations conform,” OCR Director Roger Severino said in a statement.
“The American people want vigorous protection of civil rights and faithfulness to the text of the laws passed by their representatives,” Severino said. “The proposed rule would accomplish both goals.”
The rule was part of the many rigorous regulations enacted by the Obama administration to “protect” transgender people, which included requiring schools to allow transgender students to use the restroom that corresponds with their gender identity instead of their biological sex, which sparked lawsuits from 13 states.
The Trump administration’s decision is sure to evoke outrage similar to the protests that occurred after the Department of Defense set new guidelines last year, which required people suffering from gender dysphoria to submit a waiver in order to join the military.