Chelsea Manning, the United States Army soldier who was convicted of violating the Espionage Act in July 2013 after leaking hundreds of thousands of government documents, has officially changed her name from Bradley Manning.

Chelsea Manning Changes Name

"I've been working for months for this change, and waiting for years," Manning said in a statement after her wish had been granted. "It's worth noting that in both mail and in-person, I've often been asked, 'Why are you changing your name?' The answer couldn't be simpler: because it's a far better, richer, and more honest reflection of who I am and always have been — a woman named Chelsea."

Manning, who was born male, has stated that she’s felt female from birth and identifies as a transgender woman. In August 2013, following her sentencing to 35 years behind bars, Manning released a statement to address her gender dysmorphia, stipulating that she would like to be referred to as Chelsea and revealing that she had plans to undergo hormone therapy.

"As I transition into this next phase of my life, I want everyone to know the real me. I am Chelsea Manning, I am a female," Manning said in the statement read aloud on the Today show. "Given the way that I feel and have felt since childhood, I want to begin hormone therapy as soon as possible," Manning continued in the statement. "I also request that starting today you refer to me by my new name and use the feminine pronoun."

Manning & Hormone Treatment

Although Manning now legally has the name she desires, she’s yet to receive the hormone treatments she’s requested. Army prisons, unlike civilian prisons, are not required to provide such treatments even though Army medical personnel have diagnosed the private with gender dysmorphia.

"In August, I requested that the military provide me with a treatment plan consistent with the recognized professional standards of care for trans health. They quickly evaluated me and informed me that they came up with a proposed treatment plan,” Manning wrote. "However, I have not yet seen their treatment plan, and in over eight months, I have not received any response as to whether the plan will be approved or disapproved, or whether it follows the guidelines of qualified health professionals."

For now, Manning will continue to serve out her 35-year sentence at the Army’s Fort Leavenworth, Kansas U.S. Disciplinary Barracks, an all-male facility. Since there’s no precedent for Manning’s circumstances, military law experts have expressed their skepticism at the likehood of her getting the gender reassignment therapy for which she's asking.

– Chelsea Regan

For More Chelsea Manning News:

> Chelsea Manning Requests Hormone Therapy To Transition, No Longer Wishes To Be Referred To As Bradley Manning

> Bradley Manning Sentenced To 35 Years In Prison For Leaking Classified Military Documents

> Bradley Manning Photos Dressed As Woman, Shown At Trial To Revealed Gender Identity Crisis

> Bradley Manning Found Guilt Of Espionage; Not Guilty Of Aiding The Enemy

Read more about: