Transgender and gender non-confirming people have been sharing their personal stories and response to the report using the hashtag #WeWontBeErased. "This proposal is an attempt to put heartless restraints on the lives of 2 million people, effectively abandoning our right to equal access to health care, to housing, to education, or to fair treatment under the law", said Mara Keisling, executive director of the National Center for Transgender Equality (NCTE) in a statement.
As reported by The New York Times, the absolutely bollocks memo details how the Trump administration wants to define sex by the genitalia a person is born with. It would also do away with a series of contentions by the Obama administration that people can be any gender they choose.
While many transgender activists argue that a person's gender is largely their own choice, a department memo seen by the Times argues that a person's sex should be defined "on a biological basis that is clear, grounded in science, objective and administrable", with a person's genitals at birth defining their gender.
It is feared the changes allegedly being proposed could effectively "define out of existence" Americans who now identify as transgender - a community who are said to number at least 1.4 million people.
Trump has called for the ejection of transgender people from the military, backed away from anti-discrimination laws that protect gay workers and supported the right of businesses to cite religious principles in not serving gay couples.
In the past, Roger Severino, head of the Office of Civil Rights accused the Obama administration of a "radical gender ideology".
But officials at the department confirmed that their push to limit the definition of sex for the goal of federal civil rights laws resulted from their own reading of the laws and from a court decision. "This administration is willing to disregard the established medical and legal view of our rights and ourselves to solidify an archaic, dogmatic, and frightening view of the world".
A leaked memo suggests that the Trump administration is considering an official definition of "sex" that rejects gender confusion in favor of strictly biological criteria, much to the consternation of pro-LGBT voices. The Justice Department has not yet been asked to render a formal legal opinion, according to an official there who was not authorised to speak about the process.
The Department of Health and Human Services is considering rolling back Obama-era protections for transgender individuals. Title IX is the federal law that bars gender discrimination in education programs that receive federal funding.
Chelsea Clinton also voiced her disapproval, writing: "The Trump Administration 'Eyes Defining Transgender Out of Existence, ' at a moment when transgender Americans face high levels of discrimination and violence". The term "sex" refers to gender, which has since been expanded under the law to include sexual orientation and gender identity.