Scotiabank will be offering coverage for enhanced gender affirmation procedures for eligible employees and their dependants in Canada and the U.S. starting June 1.
The coverage will help fill the gaps in coverage to better support people from the transgender community on their own personal gender affirmation journey, said a press release. It will also build on Scotiabank’s standard benefits to include coverage for procedures such as, but not limited to, electrolysis, rhinoplasty, voice training/surgery and facial feminization/masculinization.
“We feel strongly that all of our employees, and their dependants, should have access to benefits that allow them to be their authentic selves in all aspects of their lives, including at work,” said Barb Mason, Scotiabank’s group head and chief human resources officer, in the release. “We . . . will keep focusing on constantly evolving our employee offerings to be as inclusive and accessible as possible, while challenging norms and stigmas to advance inclusion for trans and non-binary individuals in the workplace.”
A host of employers, benefits providers and insurers have added coverage in support of the trans community over the past few years. In 2019, Sun Life Assurance Co. of Canada expanded its extended health-care plan to include gender affirmation coverage to help people who are transitioning, including basic surgical procedures not covered under provincial or territorial health-care plans, such as Adam’s apple reduction and/or voice surgery, and surgical procedures to align feminine or masculine features to the transitioned gender, including facial bone reduction and/or cheek augmentation.
And in January 2021, Canadian employees of Manulife Financial Corp., as well as their dependants, received access to full gender affirmation coverage for both surgical and non-surgical treatments. In addition, Green Shield Canada introduced a gender affirmation offering last month in all of its group plans as a standard benefit.