With all the noise and tantrums emitted from the right wing today following the Supreme Court's major ruling in support of President Obama's Affordable Care Act, it's important to not let the hiss drown out what the decision means for the LGBT community.
Some of the top gay organizations react to the big news, after the jump.
Human Rights Campaign:
The Supreme Court’s decision means millions of Americans – including many lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people and their families – will be better served by our nation’s healthcare system. The Affordable Care Act addresses a number of the barriers LGBT people face in obtaining health insurance, from financial barriers to obtaining affordable coverage to discrimination by insurance carriers and healthcare providers. While there is a great deal more that must be done to ensure that the health needs of all LGBT people are fully met throughout the healthcare system, today’s decision is an important victory in the fight for healthcare equality.
This is a victory for all Americans, but in particular, the Court's decision today will save the lives of many people living with HIV - as long as states do the right thing. The Affordable Care Act will finally allow people living with HIV to access medical advancements made years ago but that have so far remained out of reach of many. With continuing prevention education, early detection, and quality care for everyone living with HIV, we have the power to stem the HIV/AIDS epidemic. But this is not a complete victory,because today's decision allows states to opt out of the Medicaid expansion that would provide insurance coverage for many low-income people who cannot otherwise afford it. Our continuing challenge will be to make sure that states opt to expand Medicaid so that more low-income people, and particularly those with HIV, can get the health care they urgently need.
The Task Force:
This ruling is fair and humane, but it also reminds us of the work that remains to be done. People of color and economically impoverished people are disproportionately affected by health inequities. We have also long known that LGBT people — particularly LGBT people of color — suffer from higher rates of health disparities, and we continue to press for reform that addresses the stark realities that many of us face every day. This advocacy includes urging the Department of Health and Human Services to use its authority to make inroads in areas such as data collection and research on LGBT health disparities. We celebrate today, but also pledge to keep pressing forward.
The Family Equality Council approached the news with this infograph:
We'll update this post as more groups issue statements.