Transgender jail may cost up to £11m
A NEW prison for transgender inmates could be built, costing up to £10.7million, under Scottish Government plans.
The cost of constructing a unit to house inmates who do not identify as male or female emerged in a Scottish Government document.
It revealed that the Scottish Prison Service (SPS) was asked to price the scheme for 20 to 30 convicts and came up with a figure of £8.7million-£10.7million.
But ministers have been accused of getting their priorities wrong. Scottish Tory justice spokesman Liam Kerr said: ‘There may be a tiny minority of cases where a non-binary gender individual could be catered for. But to spend this is outrageous and will inevitably be ridiculed by the public.
‘The hard-pressed prisons system has many costly priorities, including appropriate treatment, facilities and proper staff protection.
‘The guts of £11million for a new prison for those of nonbinary gender identity isn’t one of them.’
Prison sources fear inmates could claim to be genderneutral to seek a transfer.
Simon Calvert of campaign group the Christian Institute said: ‘Gender-confused people deserve our compassion. What they’re not entitled to, and probably aren’t even asking for, is their own national infrastructure at taxpayers’ expense.
‘What next? Schools? Nonbinary shopping precincts? Non-binary traffic lanes?’
Dr Stuart Waiton, a senior sociology lecturer at Abertay University in Dundee, called the proposal ‘yet another example of a political class acting in a manner that seems at odds to ordinary people’.
He added: ‘To reorganise the criminal justice system around it at considerable expense is irrational.’
The details emerged in a 182-page consultation docuendorsed ment on an overhaul of gender recognition laws.
The SPS said of the £11million tally: ‘That is the cost of acquiring a site and building the unit.’ It did not include annual running costs, which could top £1million.
The Mail revealed on Saturday that schools have been told to allow transgender pupils to use any toilet or changing room they wish – and to educate any complaining parents about their ‘misconceptions’.
Guidance issued to schools to make them more ‘inclusive’ says transgender children should be able to share rooms on school trips with others who share their gender identity – and there is ‘no reason’ to inform parents. Pupils who feel ‘uncomfortable’ about sharing facilities should be sent to other toilets or get changed afterwards.
The guidance, published by LGBT Youth Scotland, is by the Scottish Government and 16 local authorities. But parents’ groups are angry such pupils will have ‘privileges’ over others.
Meanwhile, universities are allowing students and staff who do not identify as either a man or woman to call themselves ‘Mx’ rather than Mr, Miss or Ms.
The policy is designed to counter allegations of discrimination from transsexuals and is spreading in the higher education sector.
Glasgow University has announced its ‘gender and sexual diversity champion’ is behind the move to introduce the title ‘Mx’, saying: ‘The addition of this option will allow staff who identify as “non-binary” to make a positive choice rather than being limited to titles which do not accurately reflect their identity.’
‘To spend this is outrageous’ ‘Ridiculed by the public’