April 29, 2019
Area(s) of Interest: LGBT Health Advocacy
The California Medical Association (CMA) recently submitted an amicus brief with the California Court of Appeal in Minton v. Dignity Health, a case involving discrimination against Evan Minton, a transgender man who was denied a hysterectomy at a Catholic hospital.
Mr. Minton filed a lawsuit against Dignity Health alleging that its actions violated California’s Unruh Civil Rights Act, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex - which includes a person’s gender, gender identity, and gender expression – in all business establishments and guarantees Californians full and equal “accommodations, advantages, facilities, privileges, or services” in business establishments the State.
Dignity Health filed a motion to dismiss the case, arguing that sterilization procedures are not provided at its Catholic hospitals in accordance with the Catholic Church’s Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services (ERDs) and that its alleged conduct is protected by its constitutional amendments under the First Amendment. The trial court granted Dignity Health’s motion and dismissed the complaint. Mr. Minton is appealing the trial court’s order to dismiss his case in the California Court of Appeal.
CMA’s brief argues that Dignity Health’s adherence to the Catholic Church’s ERDs not only discriminates against transgender patients, but also adversely impacts patient access to care, interferes with physician clinical decision making and medical staff governance, and threatens California’s longstanding policies prohibiting the lay practice of medicine.
For more details, see CMA’s brief.