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"While other cities are slashing employee benefits, Berkeley is slated to add one more: paying for sex-change operations," the San Francisco Chronicle reported on Tuesday.
The Berkeley City Council was expected to vote Tuesday night on a proposal to reserve $20,000 annually for city employees' gender-reassignment surgery, which is not covered by the city's health insurance providers, the newspaper reported.
The benefit, to be distributed on a first-come, first-serve basis, would allow employees to collect the money before the operation.
"We offer all kinds of benefits to our employees. This brings our benefits in line with what's just and fair for the transgender community," said City Councilman Darryl Moore, who originally proposed the idea in 2007.
The benefit would allow employees to collect the money before the operation. To receive the payout, employees would have to have lived as the opposite sex for at least one year and undergone hormone therapy. They also would have to have worked for the city at least a year.