A transgender prisoner sued for the right to receive hormone therapy and other transgender treatment while in prison, according to an announcement made Monday.
ACLU of Oregon declared that it was suing on behalf of Michelle Wright, a transgender female who was born a man, reports the Oregon Public Broadcasting.
Wright is currently serving time for attempted robbery.
According to the complaint, Wright asked for medical care over 100 times to treat his gender dysphoria. Because he was refused the proper care, the complaint alleges Wright tried to kill himself and castrate himself.
“For example, in early 2016, while incarcerated at Snake River Correctional Institution (“SRCI”), Ms. Wright repeatedly expressed a compulsion to auto-castrate and requested hormone therapy and treatment for gender dysphoria,” the complaint reads.
The complaint claims that denying Wright proper treatment violates the Eighth Amendment because it amounts to cruel and unusual punishment.
“I have been aware for quite some time that I am a female inside but quite clearly my insides are not matched to my exterior. At the beginning of my time, I was pretty afraid to pursue being transgender while I was incarcerated,” said Wright, in a pre-recorded video statement.
While the Oregon Department of Corrections could not comment on the case specifically, the spokeswoman did say that the prison does its best to meet the needs of transgender people.
“DOC has been proactive in addressing the needs of incarcerated transgender people. DOC looks forward to its continued work on these issues and to responding to the specific complaints raised in the litigation in court,” the statement said.
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