OAKLAND (CBS SF/AP) — An Oakland judge blocked Trump administration rules that would have allowed employers to opt out of providing birth control coverage for women workers on Sunday.
U.S. District Judge Haywood S. Gilliam Jr. ordered the motion forward of a preliminary injunction, which was secured by a coalition of 14 attorneys general led by California AG Xavier Becerra.
The injunction blocks–in 13 states, including Washington, D.C.– the Trump administration’s attempt to deny millions of women and their families access to no-cost birth control guaranteed by the Affordable Care Act.
“The law couldn’t be clearer–employers have no business interfering in women’s healthcare decisions,” said Attorney General Becerra in a statement on Sunday.
“Today’s court ruling stops another attempt by the Trump Administration to trample on women’s access to basic reproductive care. It’s 2019, yet the Trump Administration is still trying to roll back women’s rights. Our coalition will continue to fight to ensure women have access to the reproductive healthcare they are guaranteed under the law.”
The rules were supposed to take effect on Monday, Jan. 14 before Gilliam ordered the motion forward.
The U.S. Department of Justice said in court documents the rules “protect a narrow class of sincere religious and moral objectors from being forced to facilitate practices that conflict with their beliefs.”
The zero-cost requirement comes from a health care law under Barack Obama. Obama officials included exemptions for religious organizations.
The Trump administration expanded those exemptions and added “moral convictions” as a basis to opt out of providing birth control services.
At a hearing on Friday, Gilliam said the changes would result in a “substantial number” of women losing birth control coverage, which would be a “massive policy shift.”
© Copyright 2019 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.