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Illinois Attorney General
Kwame Raoul

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December 05, 2023

Chicago – Attorney General Kwame Raoul, as part of a coalition of 20 attorneys general, filed an amicus brief in support of transgender rights and equal access to health care.

The amicus brief, filed in Dekker v. Weida, a case pending before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit, supports a challenge to a Florida rule that prohibits Medicaid coverage of gender-affirming care, which was previously available to transgender individuals.

“Denying transgender people the gender-affirming care they need has a significant impact on their physical and mental health,” 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.”

Implemented in August 2022, the Florida rule categorically prohibits Medicaid coverage of health care services such as puberty blockers and hormone therapy to individuals who are medically diagnosed with gender dysphoria. Despite this, coverage for these services is still available when they are deemed medically necessary for the treatment of conditions other than gender dysphoria. The plaintiffs – transgender individuals on Medicaid who receive hormone therapy and other medication for gender dysphoria – filed a lawsuit in September 2022, arguing that the state’s refusal to cover these services violated equal protection and non-discrimination provisions. In June, the district court ruled in favor of the plaintiffs, holding that the rule violated the Equal Protection Clause. Florida officials appealed the court’s decision.

 In their amicus brief, Raoul and the coalition argue that Florida’s rule:

  • Significantly harms the health and lives of transgender people by denying them medically-necessary care that protects their physical, emotional and psychological health.
  • Fails to recognize how inclusive laws and policies produce positive health care outcomes among transgender people and do not require significant expenditures.

  Attorney General Raoul is joined in filing today’s amicus brief by the attorneys general of California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Hawaii, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington.