D.C.’s Whitman-Walker Health announced in an email on Tuesday to about 25,000 people that it will organize a protest march to the White House if President Donald Trump issues a “religious liberties” executive order that activists say would curtail LGBT rights.
“We are closely monitoring the new administration and its executive orders,” the Whitman-Walker announcement says. “One such order may permit religious choice to supersede other laws that protect against discrimination. This order would offer a blank check for individuals and organizations to discriminate on the basis of one’s convictions.”
LGBT advocacy groups that received a draft copy of a religious liberties order leaked from the White House say it would have a devastating impact on LGBT rights protections and would negate an Obama executive order protecting LGBT employees of federal contractors.
White House press secretary Sean Spicer has said President Trump decided not to rescind the Obama executive order and has no immediate plans to issue and sign a religious liberties order.
“We have not received any insider or additional information about the religious freedom executive order,” said Whitman-Walker spokesperson Abby Fenton. “However, we feel strongly that if an order of this nature comes out, we will respond with a march.”
Added Fenton: “We sent this preemptively because we know if an order comes out we will need to act quickly.”
She said Whitman-Walker would decide on the route to the White House that such a march would take if and when a religious liberties executive order is issued.