Great News for Alberta Just in Time for Pride Week

The Alberta Government announced today that it is re-instating health care coverage for gender-reassignment surgery. Woot! Woot! Congratulations to everyone who lobbied hard on this and got this horrible, bigoted policy reversed. I have never been a supporter of the Conservative government but Alison Redford is slowly starting to win me over. The decision to de-list gender-reassgment surgery a few years ago was an awful blow to transgendered people and all who love and support them. These are extremely expensive procedures that most people would never be able to afford on their own - and what boneheaded Stelmach and his crew didn't understand or refused to consider is that they are, in fact, medically necessary. Stelmach's government tried to claim that this was a cost-saving measure. In an effort to cut back on spiralling health care costs in our province, they had to make some tough decisions and this program was just too costly. But it's complete B.S. The total spent on GRS every year was estimated at $700,000. It seems like a lot of money until you consider the total health care budget. Then it looks like mere pennies. The claim that it was too expensive is ridiculous - particularly when you consider the fact at the time this decision was announced, the government was still in the process of changing all of the health regions to Alberta Health Services. The cost of simply changing those names - and I'm only talking about changing the name and logo on signs, letterhead, websites, etc. all over the province, far exceeded that $700,000. Yes. our goverment has millions of dollars for signs and nametags, but a few important surgeries are too expensive. It was blatant discrimination. I'm so happy to see this stupid decision reversed and I'm grateful to the people who worked to see it happen.