Lawsuit prompts state of Oregon to provide sex reassignment surgery insurance coverage for state employees

Alec (Photo: Lamda Legal)

Tara Borelli of Lambda Legal (Photo: Lambda Legal)

THE GUERRILLA ANGEL REPORT — An out-of-court settlement to a discrimination lawsuit filed by a transgender Oregon Court of Appeals clerk has resulted in sex reassignment surgery insurance coverage for all state employees.  In addition, the state will pay Alec Esquival $36,000.

Esquival, a trans man, filed the lawsuit against the state and public employees benefits board after he was denied a doctor-recommended hysterectomy. Although a hysterectomy is a covered benefit, he was denied coverage because it was for the purpose of transitioning.

Esquival’s attorney Tara Borelli (of Lambda Legal): “When the state refused to provide him with coverage for the same medical procedure that co-workers could access, Alec was compensated less based on his gender identity. Oregon has now corrected that inequity.”

Oddly enough, a 2007 state law bans private insurance companies from gender or sexuality discrimination, seemingly allowing the public employees benefits board a loophole of some sort. With the settlement, that ambiguity is gone.


Sources: Statesman Journal, AP

Alec (Photo: Lamda Legal)

Tara Borelli of Lambda Legal (Photo: Lambda Legal)



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Categories: Judicial, Courts, Transgender, Transsexual, Trans

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5 replies

  1. Love your blog, pic isn’t Alec, it’s Tara Borelli from Lambda.

  2. Yikes! Okay, thanks, I’ll fix it. 🙂

  3. What’s worse is that a disabled woman who is ill, low income due to disabilities, living on SSI, and receives Medicade (OHP) for her healthcare, cannot receive a hysterectomy when needed for health reasons. Why? Because OHP won’t pay for hysterectomies. Period. Not unless the OHP insurance carrier deems there is a life threatening illness to “warrant” one. This has got to change.

  4. Taxpayers shouldn’t have to pay for this. You want to pay for a sex change, go ahead, but the rest of us shouldn’t have to foot the bill.

    • Taxpayers shouldn’t have to pay for wars they don’t want either — If a president wants to invade a country for imaginary WMDs, he should foot the bill himself. Bottom line: We don’t get to cherry pick — either there’s medical coverage or not. In the case of a trans person, the surgery is akin to getting a kidney transplant. If it is denied, (as often is the case), there are severe medical consequences, including death. Thanks for your comment.

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