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Public Funding
Reinstated for Sex Reassignment in Ontario

Public Funding
Reinstated for Sex Reassignment in Ontario

After nearly 10 years of being delisted, public funding for sex-reassignment surgery is in the process of being reinstated in the Canadian province of Ontario, according to the Vancouver Sun.

After nearly 10 years of being delisted, public funding for sex-reassignment surgery is in the process of being reinstated in the Canadian province of Ontario, according to the Vancouver Sun. A decade ago, while Ontario was governed by the then-majority Conservative Party, sex-reassignment surgery was removed from the list of medical procedures covered by the government.

Ontario health minister George Smitherman predicts that "eight to 10" people will apply for the surgery each year, but already there are over 100 transgender individuals in Ontario on the list. This list, however, may not reflect the typical annual number of applicants. The many people waiting for surgery are part of a backlog that has been growing since 1998. Once the province finalizes the decision, those applicants will begin to receive their compensated surgeries.

"A population which has needs that are quite difficult to understand were subjected to a lot of politics. I think we should be careful not to use what is $200,000 on a $40.2 billion budget as an excuse to try and create a them-and-us conversation," Smitherman said, reflecting on the discriminatory nature of the previous government's decision.

Canadian transgender activists are celebrating the announcement, saying that the government is showing "courage." (The Advocate)

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