Adree Edmo jail portrait

Adree Edmo

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The U.S. Supreme Court has denied a request from the state of Idaho to remove a surgery date for a transgender woman in a men’s state prison, who sued the state to receive gender confirmation surgery as a treatment for gender dysphoria.

The denial of the stay — which the court issued late Thursday afternoon — means Adree Edmo, 32, will receive gender confirmation surgery this summer, said Deborah Ferguson, one of Edmo’s attorneys. The application of a stay on the surgery date, which the state filed earlier this month, was the state’s final chance to push back or prevent the surgery from taking place, Ferguson told the Idaho Press. Seven of the court’s nine justices agreed to deny the stay. Associate Justices Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito would have granted the stay, according to the court’s order.

Edmo filed the lawsuit in 2017. She’d been diagnosed with gender dysphoria by prison doctors in 2012, and while they provided her with other treatment — such as hormone therapy — they didn’t provide her with gender confirmation therapy, despite two self-castration attempts. Her attorneys argued it violated her protection against cruel and unusual punishment, and in 2018, a federal district court agreed with them and ordered the state to provide the surgery. The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals also agreed with Edmo’s case in August, and ordered the surgery should take place.

The U.S. Supreme Court’s denial of the petition for the stay effectively means the most important parts of the case are taken care of. The court has yet to grant or deny the state’s writ of certiorari, a request for the court review the case. If it does, the case will be set for the court’s fall docket, said Ferguson.

“This is truly extraordinary,” she said. “Truly.”

Gov. Brad Little’s office did not immediately return a phone call or email from the Idaho Press Thursday evening seeking comment.

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