A federal judge ruled on Monday that a federal prisoner is entitled to surgical procedures that will alter his body in order to accommodate his “transgender” identity.
As reported by USA Today, Judge Nancy Rosenstengel of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Illinois ordered the United States Bureau of Prisons (BOP) to provide a surgeon who will perform the operation for a prisoner going by the name of Christina Iglesias, a man who believes that he is a woman. The decision ended a case that has lasted for three years.
Under the conditions of Rosenstengel’s ruling, BOP must now provide a timeline for when Iglesias’ surgery will take place, including details about their vetting process for the surgeon who will perform the operation, and must submit weekly reports to the court constantly updating the judge on the matter. The judge also ordered the operation to be carried out before Iglesias’ prison sentence ends in December.
“I am hopeful that I will finally get the care I need to live my life fully as the woman I am,” Iglesias said. “BOP has denied me gender-affirming surgery for years – and keeps raising new excuses and putting new obstacles in my way. I am grateful that the court recognized the urgency of my case and ordered BOP to act.”
This ruling would mark the first time in history that a federal prisoner has been ordered to receive gender-altering surgery.
In a statement following the ruling, Joshua Blecher-Cohen, a lawyer with the far-left American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) who represented Iglesias, falsely claimed that the Constitution guarantees the right to transgender surgery.
“For years, Cristina has fought to receive the health care the Constitution requires,” Cohen said. “The court’s order makes clear that she needs gender-affirming surgery now and that BOP cannot justify its failure to provide this medically necessary care.”
“We hope this landmark decision will help secure long-overdue health care for Cristina,” Cohen continued, “and for the many other transgender people in federal custody who have been denied gender-affirming care.”
The increase in prisoners claiming to be transgender has led to further complications in the U.S. prison system. The ACLU previously represented two “transgender” prisoners who demanded that they be incarcerated in a women’s prison, since they identified as women. After ultimately winning the case and securing the prisoners’ transfer, two female inmates in the facility were eventually impregnated.