AUSTIN, Texas (CBSDFW.COM/AP) – A Texas council on Tuesday rescinded action that would have allowed social workers to turn away clients on the basis of their disability, sexual orientation or gender identity.
By a unanimous vote, the Texas Behavioral Health Executive Council restored protections of those clients who had been stripped from state social workers’ code of conduct during a joint meeting Oct. 12 with the Texas State Board of Social Work Examiners.READ MORE: Tarrant County Public Health Director Talks With Concerned Moms About Kids, Classrooms And COVID-19
The previous vote, which came at Gov. Greg Abbott’s direction, drew a backlash from social worker and civil rights advocacy groups.
In a statement, the Texas chapter of the National Association of Social Workers applauded Tuesday’s vote, saying it “was the right decision” and “would not have happened without the collective strength and unity of voices from social workers across the state and nation, countless advocacy groups, federal and state legislators, and all others voicing their grave concern against the changes.”
State Sen. José Menéndez, a San Antonio Democrat, also praised their decision.READ MORE: At Least 10 Dead, More Than A Dozen Injured After Overloaded Van Carrying Migrants Crashes In South Texas
“It is courageous to do the right thing when someone in power advised you otherwise,” he said in a statement.
He added that he appreciated the vote “to stand on the right side of history.”
Messages to the council’s spokeswoman and Abbott’s office were not immediately returned.
(© Copyright 2020 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)MORE NEWS: 'Wow, There Goes The Ground': North Texan Wally Funk Shares Story Of Her Dream Journey Into Space
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