ACLU sues Indiana Department of Correction for denying gender-affirming surgery to inmate
ACLU files lawsuit against Indiana Department of Correction
INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — The American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana on Monday filed a lawsuit against the Indiana Department of Correction for denying gender-affirming surgery for a transgender woman currently incarcerated at the facility.
ACLU’s lawsuit claims that IDOC is acting as a result of a new Indiana law that went into effect July 1, which states that IDOC cannot provide gender-affirming surgery to incarcerated transgender people.
The suit also claims that the new law violates the Eighth Amendment, which prohibits cruel and unusual punishment. The Supreme Court has ruled against the denial of necessary medical care for prisoners, as it violates the Eighth Amendment.
“The (Department of Correction) cannot deny necessary treatment to incarcerated people simply on the basis that they are transgender. To do so is a form of discrimination,” Ken Falk, ACLU of Indiana legal director, said in a release Monday.
Falk also added, “Gender-affirming care is life-saving care. If the legislature can deny a form of healthcare arbitrarily, they could just as easily deny other lifesaving treatments to people who are incarcerated.”
Additionally, the lawsuit claims that the new law violates the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment, which states that no state can deny any person equal protection of the laws.