The Trump administration on Friday rescinded rules that allowing transgender inmates to use facilities like cell blocks and bathrooms that matched their gender identity, BuzzFeed News reported. The decision reverses an Obama-era initiative to protect trans prisoners from abuse and assault.
The Bureau of Prisons now “will use biological sex” to determine the housing where inmates are first assigned, according to a notice posted Friday. The Transgender Offender Manuel has been amended to say that assigning an inmate to the gender they identify as “would be appropriate only in rare cases.”
Per BuzzFeed News:
The policy apparently gives federal officials, for example, more leeway to place transgender women in cells alongside men—a circumstance that transgender advocates argue leaves transgender inmates vulnerable to violence and rape.
The National Center for Transgender Equality, an advocacy group, criticized the change.
“The extreme rates of physical and sexual violence faced by transgender people in our nation’s prisons is a stain on the entire criminal justice system,” said Mara Keisling, executive director of the organization. “Instead of leaving the existing policy alone, the administration is clearly prepared to encourage federal prisons to violate federal law and advance its own inhumane agenda.”
H/T BuzzFeed News
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