Hand on a Prison Window

Human rights do not end on prison walls

Transsexuals have a right to sex change treatment also in jail

Today is a pretty good day for LGBTI rights in Austria: First, Alexander Van der Bellen, the candidate from the Green Party, won narrowly over his far-right rival Norbert Hofer to become new head of state. Plus: Transsexuals have a right to sex change treatment also in jail, an Austrian court has ruled in a groundbreaking judgment, and ordered the penitantiary to initiate the treatment. We quote from a press release by Rechtskomitee LAMBDA (RKL):

„The transsexual inmate, wo legally still is male, has been identifying as a female for years. He feels being a female being born in a wrong, male body. He is longing to living as a woman and being accepted as a woman and to undergo hormonal treatment and sex change surgery.
Transsexualism necessitates sex change surgery

WHO treats transsexualism as an illness (ICD 10 F64.0; DSM V: Gender Dysphoria), which necessitates hormonal treatment and sex change surgery if so wished by the person concerned. Denial of  treatment may cause severe and lasting damage and violates fundamental human rights.

The prison director nevertheless had ignored the inmate´s application. The inmate turned to the court. And the Regional Criminal Court of Vienna ordered the penitentiary to initiate the treatment (dec. 29 April 2016, 190 Bl 11/16x).

    The decision is groundbreaking


Austria has been finding itself among the leading countries worldwide on trans rights since Rechtskomitee LAMBDA (RKL) successfully had fought the divorce requirement (2006) and the surgery requirement (2009) in the Constitutional Court and the Supreme Administrative Court.“

„The decision is groundbreaking“, says Dr. Helmut Graupner, counsel of the inmate and president of Rechtskomitee LAMBDA (RKL), Austria´s LGBTI-rights-organisation, „Human rights do not end on prison walls, neither for trans inmates, who often face an especially hard time in jail.“

Main Photo: Fotolia


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