Supports Dangerous Policies for Transgender People in Prison

  • In January 2018, The Dallas Morning News reported that ADF was part of “negotiations” with the Trump administration to undo Obama-era protections for transgender inmates that allowed them to sue prisons for violating their rights and to potentially be housed with members of their gender identity. ADF was representing clients in a lawsuit who argue that the presence of transgender women violates the rights of cisgender female prisoners. ADF lawyer Gary McCaleb said he was “pretty confident” that the Bureau of Prisons would alter its protections as a result of these negotiations, particularly regarding whether transgender women are housed with non-trans prisoners. Transgender inmates are frequently housed with members of the opposite gender and experience the highest reported incidents of sexual violence in prisons and jails. In May 2018, The Dallas Morning News reported that the Bureau of Prisons made "a major reversal" of the Obama-era protections and that "transgender women will now be housed in female prisons only 'in rare cases.'" According to the report, McCaleb "declined to confirm whether the policy changes were a result of the Texas lawsuit" but said that he had "obviously been engaged in confidential negotiations." [The Dallas Morning News, 1/4/185/15/18Media Matters1/10/18]