New York City jails to ac­com­mo­date trans­gen­der in­mates

The Oneida Daily Dispatch (Oneida, NY) - - Nation + World -

In­mates in New York City’s jail sys­tem will be housed with fel­low in­mates of the gen­der they iden­tify with, of­fi­cials said Mon­day.

The an­nounce­ment by Demo­cratic Mayor Bill de Bla­sio and the city com­mis­sioner of hu­man rights means New York will join San Fran­cisco in es­tab­lish­ing a pol­icy to ac­com­mo­date trans­gen­der in­mates.

“Re­spect­ing some­one’s gen­der iden­tity or gen­der ex­pres­sion is key in mak­ing sure that ev­ery­one in New York City is liv­ing with dig­nity and re­spect,” said Carme­lyn Malalis, the com­mis­sioner of hu­man rights. “The fact that some­body’s in­car­cer­ated or not doesn’t re­ally change that.”

De Bla­sio signed an or­der in 2016 di­rect­ing all city- owned schools, re­cre­ation cen­ters and other build­ings that have sin­gle­sex bath­rooms and locker rooms to let peo­ple use the bath­rooms of the gen­der they iden­tify with.

The Depart­ment of Cor­rec­tion ini­tially re­ceived a par­tial ex­emp­tion from the or­der be­cause of in­mate safety con­cerns.

Under the new pol­icy, the Depart­ment of Cor­rec­tion will house in­mates con­sis­tent with their gen­der iden­tity un­less the out­come of a fed­er­ally re­quired safety as­sess­ment or the pref­er­ences of the in­mate re­quire al­ter­na­tive hous­ing. A trans­gen­der hous­ing unit is an op­tion for some in­mates.

The Depart­ment of Cor­rec­tion will have six months to im­ple­ment the pol­icy.

San Fran­cisco of­fi­cials an­nounced in 2015 that it would house trans­gen­der in­mates based on their gen­der iden­tity.

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