Minnesota judge could dismiss transgender prison inmate's discrimination lawsuit

A woman poses in front of the mantle of a fireplace.
Christina Lusk of Minneapolis alleges in a lawsuit that the Department of Corrections is discriminating against her because she's transgender.
Courtesy Erin Hart

A Ramsey County judge said Friday she would consider the state's request to dismiss a discrimination lawsuit from a transgender prison inmate.

Christina Lusk of Minneapolis sued the Minnesota Department of Corrections in June. The 57-year-old is scheduled for release from prison in mid-2024.

Lusk came out as transgender in 2008 and began hormone therapy shortly after. She legally changed her name and the sex on her birth certificate in early 2018 and was arrested for drug possession in December of that year.

Lusk alleges she is unsafe in the Moose Lake men's prison, and the department should not base placement decisions solely on inmates' genitalia. She also argues that the state is unconstitutionally denying her gender-affirming surgery.

In its motion to dismiss, the state argues Lusk has received gender-affirming hormone treatment and psychiatric care, and that the department's inmate placement choices are "protected policy decisions immune from suit."

Correction (Oct. 20, 2022): A previous version of this story incorrectly stated which county the judge belonged to. The current version has been updated.

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