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Recent Ruling Supports Inmate’s Sex-Change Claim

Recent Ruling Supports Inmate’s Sex-Change Claim


Does a convicted murderer have a legal right to a taxpayer-funded sex-change operation? A recent appeals court ruling suggests the answer might be yes.

Since 2000, Michelle Kosilek -- who was born Robert Kosilek -- has been trying to force the state of Massachusetts to provide her with gender-reassignment surgery, claiming that the Department of Correction's repeated denials are a violation of her constitutional rights.

Judge Mark Wolf has agreed to hear arguments from Kosilek's lawyers, who say a recent ruling by the First U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in the case of another transgender inmate in Massachusetts bolsters Kosilek's claims. In that case, "the court agreed that the Department of Correction had shown deliberate indifference to Sandy Battista's medical needs by repeatedly denying her request for female hormone treatments," reports the Boston Herald.

Kosilek, who was convicted of killing his wife in 1990, has already been receiving female hormone treatments during her incarceration in an all-male prison. If the lawsuit goes in her favor, she will be the first inmate in the United States to receive a sex-change operation funded by tax-paying citizens.

According to court papers filed by Kosilek's lawyers, the convicted murderer "suffers from terrible stress and anxiety while she waits for a resolution of this case."

Read more here.

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