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OutLaw: Bodily Autonomy and the Legal Implications of Medically Unnecessary Interventions on Intersex Children: The Next Frontier of Conversion Therapy

  • This event is archived.

OutLaw is hosting Alesdair Ittelson, Law & Policy Director at InterAct, to speak about the implications of medically unnecessary intersections on intersex children.


Alesdair Ittelson fights for young people who expand societal ideas of what it means to be healthy. As Director of Law & Policy at interACT: Advocates for Intersex Youth, Alesdair and his team work to protect the rights of those born with variations in their sex characteristics, also known as intersex conditions. Alesdair began his career at the LGBT Rights Project of the Southern Poverty Law Center as the first ever openly transgender recipient of a Skadden Fellowship. A dedicated civil rights lawyer with over a decade of experience in legal advocacy on behalf of sex and gender-expansive individuals, Alesdair’s work on the vanguard of LGBTQI issues includes the first case challenging “conversion therapy” as consumer fraud, representation of transgender youth in educational and institutional settings throughout the Deep South, and the first public case on behalf of an intersex person subjected to medically unnecessary “genital normalizing” surgery in infancy. Alesdair has advised on countless policies at the state and local level and his written guidance has influenced interpretations of federal and international human rights law, including by the United States Department of Health and Human Services and the United Nations. Alesdair’s legal efforts have been covered nationally and internationally including by the Guardian, the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Atlantic, NPR, CNN, and Al Jazeera, among others.

Alesdair received their undergraduate degree, summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa, in Political Philosophy from Brandeis University. After a year spent cataloging evidence for Habeas Corpus petitions on behalf of indigent prisoners on death row, Alesdair went on to receive their law degree from UC Berkeley where they were a member of the California Law Review and published on the tax implications of gender affirming surgery for transgender individualsAlesdair was selected to spend their final year at Harvard Law School where they received a Dean’s Scholar award for their work in Disability and the Law.

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