The state also affirmed that it is revising its policies regarding transgender inmates’ access to medically necessary treatment for gender dysphoria, including surgery. She was also denied a legal name change because the name she would like to use is a traditionally feminine name. For over 3 years, Transgender Law Center, along with a coalition of advocates, has been in negotiations with the San Francisco Sheriff’s Department to adopt and implement a policy that allows transgender people in custody to be housed and treated in accordance with their gender identity.
We are arguing that the prison system’s discriminatory actions violate fundamental constitutional guarantees, including the Eighth Amendment prohibition of cruel and unusual punishment and the Equal Protection Clause. In May 2016, Transgender Law Center began representing Athena Cadence, a transsexual woman in the custody of the San Francisco Sheriff’s Department. Cadence had filed multiple grievances while in custody requesting that her name and gender identity be acknowledged and respected.
TLC looks forward to continued work toward reducing the harms caused by prisons and jails, and moving toward the dismantling of the deeply flawed prison system. On August 7, 2015, the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation reached a groundbreaking settlement with Shiloh Quine, a transgender woman held in a men’s prison, to move her to a women’s facility and provide medical care, including gender-affirming surgery, determined necessary by several medical and mental health professionals. Transgender Law Center is representing Michelle Norsworthy, a transgender woman held in a California men’s prison.
The Sheriff subsequently released two memos indicating that she is working on a policy related to housing and searches of transgender people in custody, and directing staff to use preferred names and pronouns in interacting with transgender people. Cadence was released from custody on August 3, 2016, day 64 of her hunger strike.
According to the film, prisoners in the United States are incarcerated in men's or women's prisons depending on their biological sex (or, more specifically, whether they have male or female genitals), and not their gender identity.
As a result, pre-operative trans women are incarcerated in men's prisons, and trans men in women's prisons.
In prison they are unable to continue taking hormones or to receive counseling for gender dysphoria.
According to the film, transgender people are more likely than average to be imprisoned, and when in prison often face sexual violence from other prisoners.
Transgender Law Center wrote two letters urging Sheriff Hennessy to comply with Ms.