Separate transgender unit to be set up at UK prison for first time

Prisoner hands on barssource: Yahoo News
published: 4 March 2019

Female transgender prisoners will be housed separately from other inmates at a prison in Surrey for the first time in the UK. A wing at HMP Downview, in Sutton, will be used to hold three transgender prisoners without access to other inmates, Sky News reports.

The three women hold gender recognition certificates, meaning their gender transition is legally recognised.

Usually transgender prisoners are housed according to their legally-recognised gender, unless there are exceptional circumstances.

Reports claim the move is not expected to be rolled out across the UK and is instead aimed at dealing with the “unique risks” posed in the case of the three women at HMP Downview.

A Ministry of Justice (MoJ) spokesman said: “Prisoner safety is our biggest concern and any decisions we take will seek to best manage the risks posed by each offender.

“The wider management of transgender offenders is a highly sensitive issue which poses unique and complex challenges and we are determined to get it right.”

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