http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2011/01/17/BA1P1HA3JL.DTL If you're going to San Francisco
Be sure to wear some flowers in your hair
If you're going to San Francisco
You're gonna meet some GENITALESS people there
While other cities are slashing employee benefits, Berkeley is slated to add one more: paying for sex-change operations.
The City Council is poised to vote tonight to set aside $20,000 annually for city workers' gender-reassignment surgery
. The procedure is not covered by the city's two health insurance providers, Kaiser and Health Net.
"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.
The city would dole out the $20,000 on a first-come, first-served basis. The money would not accrue from year to year; it would stay indefinitely at $20,000.
The amount should cover at least part of the surgery costs, which range from $7,000 to more than $50,000, according to surgery and transgender information websites.