Reporting Chris Martinez
CHICAGO (CBS) — Students at UIC covered by the school’s health insurance will have an added benefit come the fall: sex change surgery.
Two students crusaded for the change in policy. CBS 2′s Chris Martinez introduces us to one of them.
For Mari Medellin, it’s something of a legacy.
“Three years in the making,” said Medellin.
That’s how long Mari spent fighting for change at UIC.
“It was student led and then supported by faculty and staff,” said Medellin.
Finally today, victory.
“It just needed the technical term, transgender healthcare,” said Medellin.
Specifically, gender reassignment surgery, perhaps more commonly called a sex change.
A trustee vote of 6 to 2 cleared the surgery’s coverage by UIC student health insurance. School officials estimating at least one student will use it every year.
“For me, it’s time,” said Medellin.
That would have included Mari had the vote come before spring graduation. The new UIC alum now prepping for surgery next summer.
“I have a great support system, my sister, my partner I mean they’ll be there every step of the way,” said Medellin.
That UIC healthcare is funded entirely by students and all of them are covered unless they opt out. This new addition is expected to cost students an extra $9 a year.