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US: Trans prisoner requests that court assigns surgeon for her operation

Joseph McCormick October 22, 2012
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A trans woman incarcerated in an all-male prison in Massachusetts who was granted gender-reassignment surgery by a court has asked the state to find a surgeon, despite the need for her court victory to be upheld on appeal.

Lawyers acting on behalf of Michelle Kosilek, 63, filed a motion requesting the court to prepare a surgeon and location for the surgery, as well as security and transportation plans for moving her to and from the surgery, despite the fact that the Department of Correction had filed an appeal against the ruling.

The motion read: “This preparation will be necessary if (and when) defendant loses his appeal, and could very well be necessary in the future for other inmates.”

Michelle Kosilek identifies herself as female but is incarcerated in an male-only prison. She was previously known as Robert, was married to Cheryl Kosilek, and was convicted of murdering her in 1990.

Judge Wolf, of Boston, Massachusetts ruled last month that Ms Kosilek, 63, would be given gender reassignment surgery in prison, as the “only adequate treatment” of her gender dysphoria. He also ruled that her legal costs should be covered.

He said: “there is no less intrusive means to correct the prolonged violation of Kosilek’s Eighth Amendment right to adequate medical care.”

Ms Kosilek’s Attorneys had offered to waive their fees, excluding out-of-pocket expenses, on the condition that the Department of Correction did not appeal against Judge Wolf’s ruling.

The Department of Correction made clear that they were to appeal against Judge Wolf’s ruling on September 26.

Related topics: Americas, US

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