Italy Allocates Taxpayer Money for Transgender Surgeries Amid Pandemic
Regional Council of Tuscany votes to prioritise gender reassignment surgery
In Italy - the European epicenter of the coronavirus pandemic - officials are allocating thousands in taxpayer money to pay for transgender surgeries amid the deadly COVID-19 crisis.
The Italian people have been battling with one of the worst coronavirus outbreaks in the world.
Until being recently surpassed by the United States, Italy was suffering the largest number of deaths in the world, with over 20,000 people killed so far by the Chinese virus.
Hospitals and mortuaries in Italy are overwhelmed, and its government is now begging the European Union for aid in the hope of preventing an economic meltdown as a result of the ongoing lockdown measures.
But gender-confused Italians in Tuscany need not worry.
The regional government is putting measures in place to ensure sex-change surgeries can still go ahead.
According to the official minutes of their March 23 meeting, the Regional Council of Tuscany voted unanimously to provide 80,000 euros for sex reassignment surgeries over the course of the next year.
The money will be given to the USL Tuscany Northwest Health Society, a company that operates 13 hospitals throughout Tuscany.
The society employs 13,000 staff and attends to the health needs of 1.2 million citizens.
The money will be paid out in two installments.
The first 80 percent will be provided to USL Tuscany Northwest at the beginning of the project.
While the remaining 20 percent will be issued after the company provides a detailed report of the transgender surgeries it has performed and the costs they incurred.
Despite the funding, USL Tuscany Northwest is still asking the public for donations on social media.
In a call posted on their Facebook page earlier this month, the company provides information on how people can send them money.
It says the donations are needed “for the purchase of crucial equipment to manage the difficult situation in which all the services are currently operating” (see below).
The company doesn’t specify whether any of the money they receive will be used for gender reassignment surgeries during the coronavirus pandemic, however.
Italy is currently locked in a heated conflict with the European Union over the issue of whether the bloc should provide funding to member states, like Italy, that are undergoing an economic crisis.
Under debate is whether the aid would come in the form of loans that will have to be repaid, or provided as so-called “corona bonds” that would distribute the debt across all the members of the Eurozone in order to share the pain.
On Friday, both Italy’s left-wing Five Star Movement — currently the largest party in the Italian Parliament — and Matteo Salvini’s right-wing Lega — currently the country’s most popular party — made it clear that they opposed anything other than the issuing of corona bonds.
Both parties declared they would even topple the existing ruling coalition in Rome if necessary to make it happen, according to a report by Il Giornale.