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Police, Jails & Prisons

Transgender people are too frequently targeted for violence and abuse because of their gender identity or presentation. Routinely, however, that violence and abuse comes from the very authorities entrusted with their safety. Police frequently harass and profile transgender people of color, sowing distrust among the very communities they have sworn to serve. According to the 2015 US Transgender Survey, a majority (57%) of transgender people are afraid to go to the police when they need it.

Transgender people in prison are exposed to horrific rates of abuse by both staff and their fellow inmates, facing physical and sexual assault at much higher rates than their counterparts. As the USTS found, transgender people are ten times as likely to be sexually assaulted by their fellow inmates and five times as likely to be sexually assaulted by staff. Transgender prisoners also face numerous other challenges behind bars, including denials of medical care and lengthy stays in solitary confinement.

Across the country, local advocates and communities are working to hold officials accountable and foster relationships meant to ensure the safety and rights of all. NCTE seeks to empower these advocates to effect change where it is needed most by providing publications, research, and technical assistance  to local advocates. If you are working to improve the standards faced by transgender people in prison or the treatment of transgender people by your local police department, please contact NCTE’s Racial and Economic Justice Policy Advocate Mateo De La Torre at mdelatorre@transequality.org.

Resources

From the Blog

February 17, 2017

Executive Orders Lay Out Agenda to Expand Policing and Incarceration

trio of executive orders lay out President Trump’s agenda undo important steps toward common-sense police and criminal justice reform, expand mass incarceration, and give police sweeping new powers. While the orders themselves call for the creation of new task forces, reports, policy reviews, and recommendations to Congress, full implementation of this agenda would be dangerous and costly for the nation, would further criminalize communities of color, and would be especially perilous for transgender people.

October 12, 2016

NCTE Backs Challenges to Prostitution Laws and Their Discriminatory Enforcement

Earlier this month, NCTE applauded the filing of a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of New York’s extremely vague “loitering for the purposes of prostitution” law. This week, NCTE was also pleased to join other transgender, LGBT, women’s, and people of color organizations in supporting another lawsuit directly challenging California’s laws criminalizing sex work on the grounds that it unconstitutionally interferes with personal and private decisions about sex.

August 12, 2016

1 in 5 in Juvenile Justice System Are LGBTQ; DOJ Report Offers Recommendations

As Pride Month came to a close and in the shadow of the Orlando tragedy, the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP), part of the U.S. Department of Justice, released a report about LGBTQ youth within the juvenile justice system. 

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