A transgender prisoner in the United States has been left disappointed after being denied publicly-funded hormone treatment.
A war of words has broken out on the federal appeals court that hears cases from Florida over a vote to deny a rehearing to a prison inmate who sued over the state’s refusal to recognize her transgender status.
The judges of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit voted, 8-4, against granting a full-court, or “en banc,” rehearing to Reiyn Keohane, who had alleged violations of the Eighth Amendment’s prohibition against cruel and unusual punishment.
A three-judge panel of the appeals court in March voted to overturn an August 2018 ruling by U.S. District Judge Mark Walker ordering the Florida Department of Corrections to supply hormone therapy to Keohane and allow her to present as female; she’d been born as male.
Keohane asked the full court to reconsider, but the judges said no, drawing a blistering dissent from Judge Robin Rosenbaum, who accused the majority of violating circuit precedent and even threatening the rule of law.
The controversial matter has divided the court and left the judges arguing about the intent of the law.
Binary spokeswoman, Kirralie Smith, said an increasing number of prisoners are demanding such treatments.
“Tax-payers should not have to foot the bill for prisoners to transition. Biological males cannot become women and should not be housed in female prisons. There should be separate facilities for trans inmates but no publicly funded transitions while in prison.”
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