Retired master sergeant Charlene Lauderdale, a purple heart recipient, is suing the Veterans Administration to get full medical care. The VA acknowledging her gender dysphoria has been supplying Ms. Lauderdale with hormonal treatments and transitional care according to ABC13. But they balked at covering her Sexual Reassignment Surgery a medically necessary procedure for some trans people.
Charlene wrote “Finally after 3 years of drafting my Federal Complaint against the US Department of Veterans Affairs, I filed the case in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas to finally have the Court declare all transgender medical exclusions declared Unconstitutional and declare that Sex (Gender) Reassignment Surgery is medically necessary”
Charlene applied for a waiver for the filing fee which was denied. And since she hasn’t been able to get any of the usual LGBT legal groups to represent her she’s on her own. You can help her meet the filling fee of $1,000 on Go Fund Me.
“They call me sir, or f*g in a dress. They told me, ‘You don’t deserve treatment anyway and I don’t want to be bothered by people like yourself,'” said Lauderdale. “I just want to be treated like every other veteran that goes to the VA hospital.”
Lauderdale said she complained to hospital supervisors on several occasions about the behavior, but it hasn’t stopped.
The Department of defense is way behind the rest of the nation in recognizing transgender people. December 2nd the ACLU issued a press release announcing that the DA had changed two veterans DD214’s to indicate their legal names. This is a victory. However, it is not clear whether either of the vets had corrected their gender marker or if the Department of Defense had amended their gender on their discharge papers if so asked to.