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Fed Judge Orders Prisons To Fund Sex Changes

From a cheering Associated Press:

Judge orders inmate’s taxpayer-funded sex change

September 4, 2012

(AP) BOSTON – A federal judge on Tuesday ordered state prison officials to provide taxpayer-funded sex-reassignment surgery to a transgender inmate serving life in prison for murder.

Michelle Kosilek was born male but has received hormone treatments and now lives as a woman in an all-male prison. Robert Kosilek was convicted of murder in the killing of his wife in 1990.

U.S. District Judge Mark Wolf is believed to be the first federal judge to order prison officials to provide sex-reassignment surgery for a transgender inmate.

But federal judges are such busy little beavers it’s hard to keep track.

Kosilek first sued the Massachusetts Department of Correction 12 years ago. Two years later, Wolf ruled that Kosilek was entitled to treatment for gender-identity disorder but stopped short of ordering surgery. Kosilek sued again in 2005, arguing that the surgery is a medical necessity.

In his ruling Tuesday, Wolf found that surgery is the "only adequate treatment" for Kosilek’s "serious medical need." "The court finds that there is no less intrusive means to correct the prolonged violation of Kosilek’s Eighth Amendment right to adequate medical care," Wolf wrote in his 126-page ruling.

Prison officials have repeatedly cited security risks in the case, saying that allowing Kosilek to have the surgery would make her a target for sexual assaults by other inmates…

Perhaps that’s the idea.

But Wolf, who was appointed to the federal bench by President Ronald Reagan in 1985, found that the security concerns are "either pretextual or can be dealt with." He said it would be up to prison officials to decide how and where to house Kosilek after the surgery…

Kosilek’s lead attorney, Frances Cohen, called the decision courageous and thoughtful.

"We feel very grateful that the judge listened very carefully to the medical experts and has given Michelle Kosilek what the prison doctors had recommended," Cohen said.

Meanwhile, we have this via the Washington Times:

Connecticut insurers ordered to provide sex-change coverage

By Cheryl K. Chumley | December 30, 2013

Any health insurer providing coverage in Connecticut will now have to include sex-change surgery and hormone therapy in their plans, as ordered by the state insurance department.

The Hartford Courant reported that the state agency sent out a notice to insurance companies, ordering that “individuals with gender dysphoria … are not denied access to medically necessary care because of the individuals’ gender identity or gender expression.” Now state officials are advancing on that notice with active campaigns.

Deputy insurance commissioner Anne Melissa Dowling told the Courant that the state wanted to  “go out and affirmatively make [the policy] very clear.”  “As we were turning the corner into the new year, we just wanted to make sure very constituency was clearly heard,” she said…

Members of the gay community are cheering the new mandate.

“In some cases, transgender individuals would try to get coverage for this treatment and be categorically denied … which led to people paying out of pocket or forgoing their treatment altogether,” Zack Paakkonen, an attorney with the Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders (GLAD), told the Courant.

Insurance companies have 90 days to comply. Connecticut now joints [sic] California, Colorado, Vermont, Oregon and Washington, D.C., in requiring insurance companies to provide the benefit.

How generous they are with other people’s money.

This article was posted by Steve on Thursday, January 2nd, 2014. Comments are currently closed.

One Response to “Fed Judge Orders Prisons To Fund Sex Changes”

  1. GetBackJack says:

    Federal judges and beaver in the same sentence .. (wink) ..

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