Federal judge: transgender inmates must be given access to female items
Federal judge: transgender inmates must be given access to female items

[JURIST] A US magistrate judge issued an order [text, PDF] on Thursday requiring California prisons to provide transgender inmates who identify as female access to female-oriented items to which inmates have access in women’s correctional facilities. The order lists pajamas, robes, sandals, scarves, chains, necklaces, pumice stones and emery boards as items which are appropriate to give to such individuals. Not all items available in female correctional facilities were included in the order, as the judge found that bracelets, earrings, hair brushes and hair clips could pose “significant safety and security concerns.” The order arose in the case in Shiloh Quine, who reached a settlement [JURIST report] with California prison officials last August in which the state agreed to pay for her sex reassignment surgery.

Discrimination based on gender identity has been a controversial issue in the US and internationally. In May the Canadian Prime Minister proposed legislation[JURIST report] that would ban discrimination against transgender people. In April a labor arbitration panel in China heard [JURIST report] the first transgender job discrimination suit in the country. In March Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge filed a notice of appeal [JURIST report] of a judge’ s decision upholding an ordinance that protects members of the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community from discrimination. A day earlier North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper stated that he would not defend [JURIST report] House Bill 2 [materials], which he considers to be discriminatory against the LGBT community.