Trans prisoners 'with male genitalia' should no longer be held in women's prisons, justice secretary announces

The Justice Secretary added that he would bring forward a new policy on the matter later this year

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Transgender prisoners “with male genitalia” should “no longer be held” in women’s prisons, justice Secretary Brandon Lewis has announced.

While Mr Lewis has confirmed that the new rule is not a blanket approach, with exemptions to be considered on a “case-by-case basis”.

The Justice Secretary added that he would bring forward a new policy on the matter later this year.

Mr Lewis said: “On October 4 I announced reforms to our policy for the allocation of transgender prisoners.

Transgender prisoners “with male genitalia” should “no longer be held” in women’s prisons
Transgender prisoners “with male genitalia” should “no longer be held” in women’s prisons
Brandon Lewis
Brandon Lewis

“Under the reforms, transgender prisoners with male genitalia should no longer be held in the general women’s estate.

“This will not be a blanket rule; exemptions to these new rules will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

“This will also apply to transgender women who have been convicted of a sex offence.

“Further detail about these reforms will be announced when we publish our updated transgender prisoners policy framework before the end of the year.”

Telling Conservative Party members at the International Convention Centre in Birmingham earlier this month, Mr Lewis said the Government’s approach “will rely not just on common sense, we will also work on capacity”.

He said: “We all know that stamping out violence against women and girls does not, cannot, it must not, end just at the prison gates.”

To applause, he added: “It cannot be right that transgender prisoners, when convicted of serious sexual offences or those who have not had reassignment surgery, are housed in a general women’s estate.

“Conference, this will end – we have a duty of care to all those behind bars. One case of a sex attack or an inappropriate relationship formed with a female prisoner by a transgender inmate is one too many and we’ve had too many in recent years.

“Our management of trans prisoners will rely not just on common sense, we will also work on capacity.

“If we need to expand our use of the specialist areas for trans prisoners to further protect women in prison, then we will do that.

“Indeed, as a Government we are committed to creating 20,000 new prison places across the whole of the system by the middle of this decade.”

The latest figures as of April 2021 show there were 197 trans prisoners being held in prisons in England and Wales.