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Biden HHS Pushes ‘Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, Accessibility’ Agenda

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President Joe Biden’s Department of Health and Human Services is creating a “strategic plan” to advance goals for “diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility” in the federal workforce, according to an internal document obtained by The Daily Signal. 

The strategic plan at HHS, implemented in response to Biden’s executive order in June 2021, will build on existing diversity initiatives already in line with administration policy. 

Because HHS is the largest grant-making agency in the federal government, awarding more dollars than all other agencies combined, its final strategic plan to increase diversity likely will influence who or what entities will be awarded grants in the future.

“We are a very multiethnic country. You cannot make decisions to apply the law differently because of skin color,” Mike Gonzalez, a senior fellow at The Heritage Foundation, told The Daily Signal when asked to comment on the HHS project. (The Daily Signal is Heritage’s multimedia news organization.)

The HHS diversity plan, like those of other agencies, is supposed to be finalized by March 23. From that point forward, the Department of Health and Human Services must “establish quarterly goals and report annually on goal progress,” the document says. 

In late November, the Biden administration followed up on the president’s executive order by giving HHS and other agencies a “road map” to help each craft a strategic plan, reported FCW, a digital publication for federal information technology officials.

Biden’s order included definitions of the terms diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility—as well as “underserved communities”—that are meant to serve as a guide for the entire federal workforce. 

The definition of underserved communities is the most verbose, taking in “individuals who belong to communities of color, such as Black and African American, Hispanic and Latino, Native American, Alaska Native and Indigenous, Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander, Middle Eastern and North American persons.” 

The definition also “includes individuals who belong to communities that face discrimination based on sex, sexual orientation, and gender identity (including lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, gender non-conforming, and non-binary (LGBTQ+) persons),” “individuals with limited English proficiency,” “immigrants,” and “individuals who belong to communities that may face employment barriers based on older age or former incarceration.” 

Biden’s order says it is possible for individuals to belong to more than one underserved community. 

‘A Racist Reorganization’

Xavier Becerra, the former attorney general for California who was tapped by Biden as secretary of health and human services, contributes an introductory message to the document.

In it, Becerra says team members “will work hand-in-hand with each operating division and each staff division engaging members of underserved communities to ensure tight collaboration, partnership, accountability, and ultimately, progress toward our DEIA-related ambitions.” 

The goal, Becerra adds, is to “embed DEIA [diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility] into the fabric” of the work done not just at Health and Human Services, but throughout the entire administration.

An HHS spokesperson did not respond to The Daily Signal’s request for comment on its draft strategic plan. 

Mike Howell, a senior adviser on government relations at The Heritage Foundation, said he sees a Biden administration effort to reorganize the federal government along racial lines. 

 “The Biden administration is beholden to the woke agenda,” Howell said in an email to The Daily Signal. “This country has real problems to solve, and instead the Biden administration is focused on a racist reorganization of the federal government not seen since Democrat President Woodrow Wilson resegregated the government.”

“Nothing good comes of this,” he said.

Strings Attached? 

Biden’s proposed budget for fiscal year 2022 allocates $131.8 billion in discretionary budget authority and $1.5 trillion in mandatory funding for the Department of Health and Human Services, which has about 80,000 employees. 

The proposed budget represents an increase of $25.1 billion (or 23.5%) from fiscal 2021, according to an analysis from the nonprofit Association of American Medical Colleges. The agency may spend up to $2.1 trillion in fiscal year 2022, according to government records.

The Department of Health and Human Services exerts significant influence through the grant-making process, where it has established relationships with public and private entities. In fact, the document says, “HHS is responsible for almost a quarter of all federal expenditures and administers more grant dollars than all other federal agencies combined.”

Over the years, the department has collaborated with state, local, tribal, and U.S. territorial governments and partnered with nongovernmental organizations. The HHS document on diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility tacitly acknowledges that grant recipients may need to toe the line in following the directives of Biden’s executive order, saying:

Grantees in the private sector, such as academic institutions and faith-based and neighborhood partnerships, provide many HHS-funded services at the local level. HHS also works closely with other federal departments and international partners to coordinate its efforts to ensure the maximum impact for the public.

Amid the jargon on “DEIA” directives, Heritage’s Howell told The Daily Signal, he sees much at stake for taxpayers. He said he anticipates that Biden administration officials will make a concerted effort to funnel grants to groups viewed by the administration as sufficiently woke. 

“They are steering taxpayer resources—via the federal government’s enormous grant power—to organizations that only adhere to the wokest and most racially divisive principles,” Howell said.  

Although diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility have “been a focus” for many HHS divisions, the document says, these goals have not been a particularly high priority at the department level for the “last few years,” an apparent reference to the Trump administration.

‘Opposite of Equality’

The Office of Equal Employment Opportunity, Diversity and Inclusion, within the purview of the assistant HHS secretary for administration, is expected to play a key role in rectifying any shortcomings. 

The office has been assigned the task of ensuring accountability “across three tiers” as officials implement the strategic plan: the DEIA Executive Council, the DEIA Advisory Committee, and the DEIA Division Council. The document says the office will provide support with “messaging” and “tools to collaborate most effectively” to ensure implementation of the plan. 

In his introduction to the HHS document, Becerra says that by successfully implementing these initiatives, his department will be in a better position to “tackle disparities in who gets access to health care and human services.”

But Heritage’s Gonzalez, who writes on critical race theory, identity politics, diversity, and multiculturalism, said he is not sure that Biden’s plans could pass the court system’s “strict scrutiny” standard, a form of judicial review based on the 14th Amendment’s equal protection clause. 

Gonzalez said he views the Biden administration’s approach to diversity and related issues as a “facade” designed to “enforce intellectual conformity” in violation of “individual identity.” 

He also is concerned that seemingly benign definitions of diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility belie a political agenda, Gonzalez said:

Equity is just the opposite of equality. It has come to mean the government administering justice unequally depending on what race you are or what ethnic category the Census Bureau has put you in. 

It is the opposite of the government treating you on a colorblind basis. Inclusion really just leads to speech codes. You lose your right to speech because you cannot say something that might discomfort others.

5 Main Principles

Five principles are folded into the HHS strategic plan, according to the document obtained by The Daily Signal. 

Principle 1 is “Demonstrated focus on increasing diversity within HHS.” The main objective is to address what the department views as “lack of a central recruitment and outreach strategy” for “underrepresented minorities.” 

Principle 2 is “Improved retention and opportunity creation,” meant to address “a particular lack of promotion or advancement” of “underrepresented groups.” 

Principle 3 is “Enhanced climate for equity, inclusion, and accessibility.” Although “significant activity” corresponds with the goals of Biden’s order, a “weak” and “inconsistent” connection exists between the department’s leadership and divisions charged with implementing diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility directives that this principle is expected to rectify. 

Principle 4 prioritizes “Leadership-driven DEIA cultural reform” so that communication may be strengthened and supervisors have a firm grasp on how “to lead their teams through DEIA-related topics.” 

Principle 5 seeks “Strengthened DEIA insights through improved data.” The document identifies several challenges pertaining to “data integrity” where this principle comes into play. 

Although the document credits the Department of Health and Human Services with being out in front of other federal agencies where diversity initiatives are concerned, it says HHS has fallen short in updating pertinent information.

The document states that the department

has created an HHS-wide demographic survey to update current information and is the first agency to include sexual orientation and gender identity for the entire workforce. However, the quality, consistency, and availability of up-to-date demographic data remains a challenge.   

The HHS document also says that the department has named a new chief diversity officer, but doesn’t specify who that is. 

Biden’s executive order on diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility is only one of at least eight executive orders signed by the president to address diversity and equity objectives, according to the document. 

But unlike the other Biden orders, the document says, this one promotes an “internal (government workforce) focus for every federal department/agency.”

Have an opinion about this article? To sound off, please email [email protected] and we’ll consider publishing your edited remarks in our regular “We Hear You” feature. Remember to include the url or headline of the article plus your name and town and/or state.

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Hailey Bieber Details Terrifying ‘Life-Altering’ Mini-Stroke She Suffered And Procedure To Close Hole In Her Heart

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Hailey Bieber has spoken out in her “own words” about the “life-altering,” “scariest moment” of her life she had after suffering what she called a mini-stroke, and later underwent a procedure to close a hole in her heart.

The 25-year-old supermodel and wife of superstar singer Justin Bieber took to her YouTube channel Wednesday and opened up about the terrifying experience of being hospitalized last month after she suffered a blood clot to her brain that traveled through a hole in her heart between 12 and 13 millimeters, reported People magazine.

“I had, like, a very scary incident on March 10, basically,” Bieber shared. “I was sitting at breakfast with my husband, having a normal day … and all of the sudden, I felt this really weird sensation that kind of like traveled down my arm from my shoulder all the way down to my fingertips. And it made my fingertips feel really numb and weird.”

“Justin [her husband] was like, ‘Are you okay?’” she added, as she explained that she tried to respond to him, but she “couldn’t speak.” “The right side of my face started drooping; I couldn’t get a sentence out.”

“Obviously, immediately, I thought I was having a stroke,” the supermodel continued. “He thought I was having a stroke. Right away, he asked for somebody to please call 911 and get a doctor.”

Hailey said that where they were, there happened to be a medic who started asking her lots of questions and testing her arms, calling it definitely the “scariest moment” of her life. The model talked about how the “facial drooping lasted for probably like thirty seconds.” Her speech did came back, but her “anxiety” about what was happening just made “everything worse.”

“By the time I got to the emergency room, I was pretty much back to normal – [I] could talk, [I] wasn’t having any issues with my face or my arm,” Bieber explained.

She said scans revealed she had, in fact, suffered a “small blood clot” to her brain which was labeled a “TIA” [Transient Ischemic Attack]. Hailey told her followers it was basically like having a “mini-stroke.”

Doctors still weren’t sure what caused it, but she said it was widely believed it was a combination of birth-control issues, recently having COVID-19, and having just traveled “to Paris and back in a very short amount of time,” calling it a “perfect storm.”

Further testing at the University of California, Los Angeles, revealed Bieber had a Grade 5 PFO [a small opening in the heart that usually closes after birth]. The outlet said the hold measured between 12 and 13 millimeters. She later underwent a procedure to close the hole, and said it went “very smoothly” and she’s recovering.

“The biggest thing I feel is I just feel really relieved that we were able to figure everything out, that we were able to get it closed, that I will be able to just move on from this really scary situation and just live my life,” Hailey shared.

“If there’s anybody that watches this that has gone through the same thing or something similar, I definitely really empathize with you,” she concluded. “And I understand how life-altering and scary it is.”

Bieber, who’s the daughter of actor Stephen Baldwin and Kennya Baldwin, married her husband Justin in 2018.

Related: Hailey Baldwin Credits Christian Faith For Marriage To Justin Bieber

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Wikipedia’s Left-Wing Bias

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I love Wikipedia. I donated thousands of dollars to the Wikimedia Foundation.

Before Wikipedia, all we had were printed encyclopedias—out of date by the time we bought them.

Then libertarian Jimmy Wales came up with a web-based, crowd-sourced encyclopedia.

Crowd-sourced? A Britannica editor called Wikipedia “a public restroom.” But Wales won the battle. Britannica’s encyclopedias are no longer printed.

Congratulations to Wales.

But recently, I learned that Wikipedia co-founder Larry Sanger now says Wikipedia’s political pages have turned into leftist “propaganda.”

That’s upsetting. Leftists took over the editing?

Sadly, yes. I checked it out.

All editing is done by volunteers. Wales hoped there would be enough diverse political persuasions that biases would be countered by others.

But that’s not what’s happening.

Leftists just like to write. Conservatives build things: companies, homes, farms.

You see the pattern comparing political donations from different professions: Surgeons, oil workers, truck drivers, loggers, and pilots lean right; artists, bartenders, librarians, reporters, and teachers lean left.

Conservatives don’t have as much time to tweet or argue on the web. Leftists do. And they love doing it. This helps them take over the media, universities, and now, Wikipedia.

Jonathan Weiss is what Wikipedia calls a “Top 100” Wikipedian because he’s made almost half a million edits. He says he’s noticed new bias: “Wikipedia does a great job on things like science and sports, but you see a lot of political bias come into play when you’re talking current events.”

Weiss is no conservative. In presidential races, he voted for Al Gore, Ralph Nader, and Barack Obama. Never for a Republican. “I’ve really never identified strongly with either political party,” he says.

Maybe that’s why he notices the new Wikipedia bias.

“People on the left far outweigh people on the center and the right … a lot [are] openly socialist and Marxist.” Some even post pictures of Che Guevara and Lenin on their own profiles.

These are the people who decide which news sources Wikipedia writers may cite. Wikipedia’s approved “Reliable sources” page rejects political reporting from Fox but calls CNN and MSNBC “reliable.”

Good conservative outlets like The Federalist, the Daily Caller, and The Daily Wire are all deemed “unreliable.” Same with the New York Post (That’s probably why Wikipedia called Hunter Biden’s emails a conspiracy theory even after other liberal media finally acknowledged that they were real).

While it excludes Fox, Wikipedia approves even hard left media like Vox, Slate, The Nation, Mother Jones, and Jacobin, a socialist publication.

Until recently, Wikipedia’s “socialism” and “communism” pages made no mention of the millions of people killed by socialism and communism. Even now, deaths are “deep in the article,” says Weiss, “treated as an arcane academic debate. But we’re talking about mass murder!”

The communism page even adds that we cannot ignore the “lives saved by communist modernization”! This is nuts.

Look up “concentration and internment camps” and you’ll find, along with the Holocaust, “Mexico-United States border,” and under that, “Trump administration family separation policy.”

What? Former President Donald Trump’s border controls, no matter how harsh, are very different from the Nazi’s mass murder.

Wikipedia does say “anyone can edit.” So, I made a small addition for political balance, mentioning that President Barack Obama built those cages.

My edit was taken down.

I wrote Wikipedia founder Wales to say that if his creation now uses only progressive sources, I would no longer donate.

He replied, “I totally respect the decision not to give us more money. I’m such a fan and have great respect for you and your work.” But then he said it is “just 100% false … that ‘only globalist, progressive mainstream sources’ are permitted.”

He gave examples of left-wing media that Wikipedia rejects, like Raw Story and Occupy Democrats.

I’m glad he rejects them. Those sites are childishly far left.

I then wrote again to ask why “there’s not a single right-leaning media outlet Wiki labels ‘reliable’ about politics, [but] Vox, Slate, The Nation, Mother Jones, CNN, MSNBC” get approval.

Wales then stopped responding to my emails.

Unless Wikipedia’s bias is fixed, I’ll be skeptical reading anything on the site.

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The Daily Signal publishes a variety of perspectives. Nothing written here is to be construed as representing the views of The Heritage Foundation. 

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Public Health England to blame for sending patients to care homes without Covid tests

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Speaking on condition of anonymity, Whitehall officials alleged that Prof Duncan Selbie, the former PHE chief executive, was ultimately responsible for informing Mr Hancock of the risks.

Prof Selbie is working as a senior adviser to the DHSC. Neither he nor the department responded to requests for comment on Wednesday.

Mr Hancock, who was replaced by Sajid Javid last year, claimed the High Court ruling had exonerated him and the had been cleared “of any wrongdoing” because PHE “failed to tell ministers what they knew about asymptomatic transmission”.

The High Court judges concluded that care home policies in March and April 2020 were “irrational” because they failed to advise that those discharged from hospitals “should, so far as practicable, be kept apart from other residents for up to 14 days”.

“Since there is no evidence that this question was considered by the secretary of state, or that he was asked to consider it, it is not an example of a political judgment on a finely balanced issue,” they said. “Nor is it a point on which any of the expert committees had advised that no guidance was required.”

After the ruling, Boris Johnson said he wanted to “renew my apologies and sympathies” to relatives who lost loved ones, adding: “The thing we didn’t know in particular was that Covid could be transmitted asymptomatically in the way that it was.”

However, the risks of asymptomatic transmission had been highlighted by Sir Patrick Vallance, the Government’s chief scientific adviser for England, who said it was “quite likely” as early as March 13 2020. Varying levels of risk had been outlined in papers from late January, the ruling said.

The judicial review was brought by Dr Cathy Gardner and Fay Harris, whose fathers, Michael Gibson and Donald Harris, died after testing positive for Covid.

‘Opens the floodgates for potential claims’

Paul Conrathe, a solicitor at Sinclairslaw who was instructed by both women, said: “It’s possible that care home providers and relatives who lost loved ones in the first wave could bring compensation claims. The Government was found to have acted ‘irrationally’ – that’s a very high legal hurdle.”

Nadra Ahmed, who chairs the National Care Association, said the ruling “opens the floodgates for potential claims to be brought against government policy”.

“This will be especially pertinent where the individual was not given a choice,” she said. “There will be a lot of people assimilating to the information as they consider if the loss of their loved one was premature, and holding the Government to account is the only way forward for them.”

Helen Wildbore, the director of the Relatives and Residents Association, said that the ruling proved “the protective ring around care homes was non-existent” and that older people were “abandoned at the outset of the pandemic”.

A government spokesman said it had been a “very difficult decision” to discharge hospital patients into care homes, taken when evidence on asymptomatic transmission was “extremely uncertain”.

The spokesman added: “We acknowledge the judge’s comments on assessing the risks of asymptomatic transmission and our guidance on isolation, and will respond in more detail in due course.”


‘He was in a home and should have been safe’

They stood outside the Royal Courts of Justice, two women unknown to each other before the Covid pandemic but brought together by tragedy, writes Tom Ough.

Cathy Gardner spoke first, delivering a steely reading of a statement. Matt Hancock’s boast of a “protective ring” encircling care homes, Dr Gardner said, was “a despicable lie of which he ought to be ashamed and for which he ought to apologise”.

Fay Harris, more downcast in demeanour but no less forthright, told journalists: “I have lost precious years with my wonderful Dad.”

Both women lost their fathers in early 2020, arguing that they might still be alive were it not for hospital patients having been discharged into care homes without having been tested for Covid.

Michael Gibson, born in 1931, had been a superintendent registrar of births and deaths. “He was in a home and should have been safe,” Dr Gardner told The Independent after his death.

Mr Gibson, who had advanced dementia, had fallen ill a couple of weeks before the first lockdown. Staff at his care home were unable to procure tests for Covid, but the virus is believed to have struck him down.

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