On July 8, 2005, a prisoner with a diagnosed Gender Identity Disorder (GID) in the Massachusetts Department of Corrections (DOC) filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 against the commissioner, the former commissioner, the directors of the Health Services Division, and the superintendent of the Department of Corrections in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. The plaintiff, represented by private counsel, asked the court for declaratory, injunctive, and monetary relief, claiming violations of the Fourteenth Amendment's Due Process Clause and Equal Protection Clause, as well as the Eighth Amendment's Cruel and Unusual Punishment Clause. In addition, the plaintiff claimed violation of the Massachusetts Declaration of Rights, negligence, intentional infliction of emotional distress, and negligent infliction of emotional distress.
Specifically, the plaintiff claimed that for three years the defendants had withheld prescribed treatment for GID for security reasons. The prescribed treatment included psychotherapy, hormone treatment, laser hair removal, and access to feminine clothing and products from the DOC's canteen. The withholding of treatment allegedly caused the plaintiff emotional and physical pain.
On March 22, 2006, Judge Douglas P. Woodlock issued an order granting plaintiff's motion to dismiss the defendant University of Massachusetts Correctional Medical Health Program. On January 8, 2008, Judge Woodlock ordered a separate and final judgment in favor of the University of Massachusetts Correctional Health Program.
On December 9, 2008, Judge Woodlock issued a preliminary injunction order requiring defendants to provide the plaintiff with a GID treatment plan set forth in the order to be implemented by the DOC's mental health service provider and medical service provider. He also issued a memorandum outlining resolution of certain issues in connection with the plaintiff's motion for preliminary injunction.
On February 6, 2009, Judge Woodlock ordered a civil jury trial to occur, and on March 1, 2010, a bench trial was set for June 14, 2010. On August 3, 2010, Judge Woodlock issued a modified preliminary injunction order requiring hormone therapy to begin shortly. On August 6, 2010, defendants Clarke and Corsini appealed this order, citing the security concerns that reasonably underpin its refusal to administer hormone therapy and contesting the finding of deliberate indifference on their part. On May 23, 2011, the First Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the judgment of the district court.
On July 11, 2011, Judge Woodlock issued the final judgment and order, replacing the preliminary injunctions, and the civil case was terminated. The order required the DOC to ensure that the medical and mental health services providers implemented the treatment provisions set out in the order, including providing the plaintiff with female hormone therapy, continued psychotherapy sessions, and access to feminine clothing and products from the DOC's canteen. In addition, the DOC had to continue to house the plaintiff in a single cell in the general population at the treatment center. The DOC was allowed to implement additional security measures deemed necessary to provide for Battista's personal safety within the general population.
Plaintiff moved for attorneys' fees and the defendants filed an opposing motion for bill of costs on August 22, 2011. This motion was never ruled upon and the case appears to be closed.Jessica Kincaid - 11/25/2013