Joe Biden takes action to protect LGBTQ Americans amid attacks

WASHINGTON — Just in time for Pride Month, the Biden administration is taking a series of steps to counter a wave of attacks on the LGBTQ community in GOP-led states across the country.

President Joe Biden will announce a new Community Safety Partnership led by the Department of Homeland Security on Thursday to protect LGBTQ Americans.

The partnership will train community centers and LGBTQ businesses, such as restaurants and gay bars, that have faced threats to respond to “worst-case” scenarios, such as bomb threats, active shooters and cybersecurity attacks. The partnership will also work with healthcare providers and others who serve the LGBTQ community.

The administration also plans to release $1.7 million for new federal programs to support the health and mental health of LGBTQ youth. As part of this effort, the Department of Health and Human Services will issue a notice to mental health professionals on best practices for supporting the mental health of transgender youth, who in some states have been the subject of bans on gender-affirming care.

“LGBTQ Americans are being targeted for who they are, and that, quite simply, is discrimination,” said White House domestic policy adviser Neera Tanden.

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President Joe Biden's administration is undertaking a series of new initiatives to protect the LGBTQ community amid a wave of attacks.

President Joe Biden’s administration is undertaking a series of new initiatives to protect the LGBTQ community amid an onslaught of attacks.

Additionally, the Department of Education will appoint a coordinator within the Office of Civil Rights to support book bans that target materials with LGBTQ content. The coordinator will be responsible for training schools on how book bans that target a specific community create a hostile school environment and may violate federal civil rights laws.

The Department of Housing and Urban Development will also launch a new federal initiative to address LGBTQ health and youth homelessness.

Biden, who is considered the most LGBTQ-friendly president in history, issued a proclamation two weeks ago designating June as Pride Month. On Thursday night, he will host what the administration says will be the biggest Pride celebration ever at the White House.

Michael Collins covers the White House. Follow him on Twitter @mcollinsNEWS.

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This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Biden takes action to protect LGBTQ Americans amid attacks

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