Rep. Kenyatta applauds Pa. Health Secretary Dr. Rachel Levine for historic White House nomination

HARRISBURG, Jan. 19 – State Rep. Malcolm Kenyatta, D-Phila., today congratulated Pennsylvania Department of Health Secretary Dr. Rachel Lavine for her historic nomination by President-elect Joe Biden to be national assistant health secretary.

If confirmed by Congress, Levine will be the first trans person to hold a cabinet position in the White House.

“Doctor Rachel Levine is the best of the best. I am thrilled that a woman of her character and professionalism will also make history becoming the first trans person to ever be confirmed by the United State Senate. In addition to her solitary milestone, she is set to become a member of an administration that truly looks like the country. This diversity spans across race, gender and now, sexual identity and expression.

“Doctor Levine, a well-respected pediatrician, garnered national acclaim as the face of mitigation efforts in Pennsylvania in the pandemic. Through her knowledge and transparency, compounded by her calming voice, Doctor Levine delivered life-saving information daily to countless residents across the state, reassuring us all that we were going to get through this.

“As a woman of trans experience and longtime activist for trans rights, Doctor Levine will shed light to the health disparities and discrimination in our medical system that far too often results in trans and LGBTQ people’s health not being prioritized. This has especially been evident in the wake of this public health crisis. Another pressing issue trans Americans continue to face is the rampant violent transphobia in policing and general society that has claimed the lives of roughly 40 trans people in 2020. Our nation must elevate these plights to the forefront. I look forward to working with her on what more our state legislature can do to find comprehensive solutions in tackling this growing threat that continues to drastically impact the quality of life of our most vulnerable neighbors here in our commonwealth.

“In all, Doctor Levine will be deeply missed as a leading figure in Pennsylvania’s fight against this virus and her statewide activism in uplifting the visibility of trans people, but we are excited to share her talents with America.”