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Judge Refuses to Dismiss Suit against BOP after BOP Started Hormone Therapy for Prisoner with Gender Identity Disorder

On June 7, 2010, U.S. District Judge Joseph Tauro denied a motion to dismiss filed by the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) in a suit by a prisoner suffering from Gender Identity Disorder (GID).

Vanessa Adams (birth name Nicholas Adams) repeatedly requested hormone therapy, believing she more appropriately identified as female than male. The BOP denied her requests, though, citing a BOP policy that limits hormone therapy to individuals who were taking hormones prior to their incarceration.

After Adams cut off her penis and filed suit, Judge Tauro allowed an outside expert to examine Adams for a GID diagnosis. The same day Judge Tauro entered the order permitting the expert evaluation, the BOP initiated hormone therapy.

The BOP sought to dismiss Adam’s suit on mootness grounds after initiation hormone therapy, Judge Tauro denied the motion holding that BOP had failed to show that it would not stop Adams’ hormone therapy.

Adams’ receipt of hormone therapy is significant as the BOP steadfastly refused to provide GID therapy for individuals who were not receiving treatment for the disorder prior to their incarceration.

See: Adams v Federal Bureau of Prisons, No. 09-10272-JLT, (D. Mass. 2010).

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Related legal case

Adams v Federal Bureau of Prisons