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Attorney General Raoul joins coalition to protect access to gender-affirming care
—From a press release
2022-12-08

This article shared 2298 times since Thu Dec 8, 2022
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CHICAGO — Attorney General Kwame Raoul today stood up for transgender rights, joining a coalition of 16 attorneys general in filing an amicus brief supporting efforts to promote equal access to healthcare in West Virginia. The plaintiffs, two transgender individuals, brought suit after being unable to obtain Medicaid coverage for gender-affirming surgical care through the West Virginia State Medicaid Program.

"Transgender people deserve access to gender-affirming care, and I am committed to fighting against health care discrimination," Raoul said. "I will continue to work with my fellow attorneys general to support the rights of transgender people and oppose efforts that jeopardize the safety and health of the LGBTQ+ community."

The brief, filed in the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, asks the court to affirm a lower court ruling in the case of Fain v. Crouch. That ruling determined that the West Virginia State Medicaid Program's denial of medically necessary, gender-affirming surgical care violates the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Raoul and the coalition argue that discrimination against transgender people violates the Equal Protection Clause because it constitutes discrimination based on sex, as found by Supreme Court rulings and other cases.

The amicus brief argues that gender-affirming treatment improves well-being at minimal expense. Illinois and other joining states have adopted policies ensuring access to gender-affirming care for their residents. According to Raoul and the coalition, these policies have categorically improved the well-being of transgender people, reducing the risk of suicide, substance abuse and depression, while not meaningfully increasing premium costs.

Today's brief is Attorney General Raoul's latest action to defend the rights of transgender and LGBTQ+ people. In October, Raoul joined a coalition supporting coverage for gender-affirming care under the North Carolina State Health Plan for Teachers and State Employees. In August, Raoul joined two separate coalitions of attorneys general supporting LGBTQ+ students against discrimination in the classroom. He also joined a coalition of attorneys general opposing an Alabama law that criminalizes evidence-based and medically accepted gender-affirming care for transgender youth.

Joining Attorney General Raoul in filing the brief are the attorneys general of Colorado, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington.


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