This week President Trump signed an executive order banning federal agencies and their contractors — potentially even APLA Health — from conducting “workplace training that inculcates in its employees any form of race or sex stereotyping or any form of race or sex scapegoating”. The executive order essentially bars contractors from conducting training that teaches, advocates, or promotes “divisive concepts” such as implicit bias and systemic racism.
The executive order is the most recent in a series of actions by the Trump administration that attempt to undermine a retelling of American history that emphasizes the lasting impacts of slavery, white supremacy, and violence against Indigenous peoples.
Earlier this month, the Office of Management and Budget released a memo directing federal agencies to identify any critical race theory and white privilege trainings within their departments and “identify all available avenues within the law to cancel any such contracts and/or to divert Federal dollars away from these un-American propaganda training sessions.”
APLA Health strongly condemns these bans and remains firmly committed to advancing important national conversations on systemic racism, racial discrimination, and white supremacy.
“APLA Health has been an active participant in the retelling of the history of LGBTQ Americans,” said APLA Chief Executive Officer Craig E. Thompson. “The country is currently engaged in yet another long-overdue retelling of history – this time the history of racism and oppression.
“We need the fullest vetting of American history possible,” Thompson said, “President Trump’s executive order shuts down that process, and violates the right to free speech enshrined in the Constitution that he purports to defend.”
The executive order follows on the heels of the President’s 1776 Commission, launched earlier this month to “restore patriotic education to our schools” and support “pro-American curriculum that celebrates the truth about our nation’s great history.”
“Systemic racism is embedded in virtually every facet of our society, including healthcare, education, and the criminal justice system,” Thompson continued. “APLA Health will continue efforts to acknowledge our nation’s racist past and advocate for a more equitable society for all Americans.”
The executive order will likely be challenged in the courts.
APLA Health restores dignity and trust within underserved communities by providing world-class LGBTQ+ empowering healthcare, support services, and HIV specialty care. Since 1983, APLA Health has remained steadfast in its commitment to ending the HIV/AIDS epidemic in our lifetime. The agency is a multi-site operation includes eight Federally Qualified health Center (FQHC) locations, serving more than 18,000 people annually in Los Angeles County, the nation’s most populous. We provide 20 different services including: medical, dental, behavioral health and HIV specialty care; PrEP counseling and management; health education and HIV prevention; and STD screening and treatment. For people living with HIV, we offer housing support; benefits counseling; home healthcare; and the Vance North Necessities of Life Program food pantries; among several other critically needed services. Additionally, we are leaders in advocating for policy and legislation that positively impact the LGBTQ+ and HIV communities and conduct community-based research on issues affecting the communities we serve. For more information on APLA Health visit https://aplahealth.org.