U.S.District Reed Oconnor state Texas U.S.District Reed Oconnor state Texas

AP Inc. weighs in on deadly anti-PrEP ruling by Fort Worth judge

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U.S. District Judge Reed O’Connor of Fort Worth ruled on Sept. 7 that religious employers should not be required to cover pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) in their health plans because the drugs violate their religious freedom.

Without explaining how a drug that prevents a potentially fatal disease violates someone’s religious freedom, the ruling that could jeopardize the lives of hundreds of thousands of people stands.

Abounding Prosperity issued the following statement: As an organization dedicated to responding to social and health disparities devastating communities of color and LGBTQ+ communities, Abounding Prosperity, Incorporated condemns this ruling, as it is racially and sexually discriminatory, could reverse the progress made in ending the HIV epidemic and threaten access to other free preventative care like routine screenings for cancer, heart disease, preeclampsia and hearing. “This case is blatantly oppressive and discriminatory, serving as yet another attempt to strip individuals of their rights in the name of religion.

It also sets the precedent to retract other personal freedoms in the future,” said Kirk Myers-Hill, founder and chief executive officer, Abounding Prosperity, Inc. “The largest proportion of HIV cases in Texas are among Blacks with Latinos following close behind.

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