If the military prison holding Chelsea Manning will allow hormone treatments, Manning herself is open to covering the costs, her lawyer tells the AP. A Fort Leavenworth prison spokeswoman has already said the facility won't provide the therapy, but Manning and her lawyer, David Coombs, are hoping it "will simply do the right thing" in allowing the treatment. That would prevent Manning from having to sue, Coombs says, adding that Manning is not planning on sex-reassignment surgery. She also expects to continue to be housed with Leavenworth's all-male prisoner population.
Manning had long planned to announce her identity change, but she waited until after the trial to minimize media scrutiny, Coombs notes. "People might think it was an effort to get further attention." But the soldier decided to it was time to make the announcement when she and Coombs saw a report quoting the prison spokeswoman as saying Leavenworth wouldn't provide the treatment. Given that an Army psychiatrist had diagnosed Manning with gender identity disorder, the soldier and her lawyer had believed the prison might allow the treatment. "It's just to be comfortable in her own skin," Coombs says.