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Police, Jails & Prisons

Police interactions, jails and prisons can be traumatizing and are often dangerous interactions and places, especially for transgender people and anyone who is gender non-conforming. In a country that incarcerates more of its people than any other in the world, transgender people are more likely to be stopped and questioned by police, engage in survival crimes such as sex work, end up behind bars, and more likely to face abuse behind bars. Being transgender or gender non-conforming in an American jail or prison often means daily humiliation, physical and sexual abuse, and fear of reprisals for using the legal remedies to address underlying problems. Many transgender people are placed in solitary confinement for months or years just because of who they are. In recent years, these issues have gained national attention. For example, regulations to implement the Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA) include specific provisions aimed at protecting transgender prisoners. NCTE and other advocates continue to  press for stronger protections and accountability and create new tools for advocacy focused on transgender and gender non-conforming people’s interactions with the criminal justice system with local, state and federal law enforcement officials and the public at-large.

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