(LifeSiteNews) – A New Jersey woman is suing the Catholic hospital in Paterson after it declined to perform a hysterectomy as part of a “gender reassignment.”
Gay legal advocacy organization Lambda Legal filed suit January 5 against St. Joseph’s Regional Medical Center, its parent health system, and the priest in charge of pastoral care and patient relations. They are alleging discrimination based on sex and gender identity.
Citing federal and state law, the lawsuit alleges the hospital and Father Martin Rooney denied Jionni Conforti “medically necessary treatment” that would “help Jionni align himself with his true sex.”
Requesting a jury trial, the suit seeks an injunction forcing the health system to provide gender reassignment and other similar treatment to gender-confused individuals, as well as damages for Conforti’s “emotional distress and suffering, embarrassment, humiliation, emotional pain and anguish, violation of his dignity, and loss of enjoyment of life.”
Conforti had been scheduled for a complete hysterectomy in 2015. Her lawsuit says she was initially told by the head nurse in charge of surgery that she could have the procedure, but was later told by a hospital administrator that her surgeon could not perform the hysterectomy because the hospital was Catholic.
“I felt completely disrespected,” Conforti said, according to the Associated Press. “That’s not how any hospital should treat any person regardless of who they are.”
In a statement provided to LifeSiteNews, St. Joseph’s Healthcare System said the hospital follows the Catholic Ethical and Religious Directives (ERDs) promulgated in 2009 by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB).
“St. Joseph’s Regional Medical Center is a leading Catholic healthcare institution serving one of the most diverse and underserved populations in New Jersey,” it said. “The Medical Center follows the Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services in making decisions about care and treatment.”
The ERD’s are guiding principles for Catholic hospitals to ensure they operate in line with Catholic teaching….