News Release - Mayor Warren Stands for Transgender Rights

City of Rochester

News Release

(Friday, July 14, 2017) – Mayor Lovely A. Warren announced today that the City of Rochester has signed on to an amicus brief supporting the Transgender American Veterans Association’s federal lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs seeking to reverse its decision to exclude gender alteration surgery from veterans’ medical benefits.

“As Rochester begins Pride Week to celebrate the contributions of our LGBTQ community, I think it’s appropriate that we support our transgender veterans who have already demonstrated their love for this country by serving in our nation’s armed forces,” said Mayor Warren. “One of my first acts as Mayor was to extend employee health benefits to the City’s transgender employees, so it’s difficult for me to understand how our federal government would seek to blatantly discriminate against our transgender veterans. I am proud to join the many cities, counties and businesses who have signed on to this brief. We know from experience that our transgender citizens are valued members of our community who deserve the same rights and benefits as all other citizens.”

Rochester has joined the amicus brief as one of several cities, counties and businesses that already offer transgender inclusive medical benefits, including gender alteration surgery. The brief is appended to the federal suit titled Dee Fulcher, Giuliano Silva, And Transgender American Veterans Association Versus the Secretary of Veterans Affairs. The signers of the brief are collectively known as amici, which is Latin for impartial advisor.

The brief states: “Their collective experiences, and the VA’s own cost estimates, undermine any claim that additional appropriations are required for the Department to cover such care for transgender veterans. In amici’s view, providing such comprehensive care is essential for promoting their shared values of equal respect and dignity for all people, and denying such care can have only the illegitimate purpose of disadvantaging transgender people as a group.”


News Media; for more information, contact Communications Director James Smith at 428-7135.