US lawsuit takes aim at trans inclusion in women’s prisons

US lawsuit takes aim at trans inclusion in women's prisons

A new law providing for transgender prisoners in California to be housed and searched in a manner consistent with their gender identity has been challenged as unconstitutional by an anti-trans campaign group.

The Women’s Liberation Front (WoLF) argues that the Transgender Respect, Agency, and Dignity Act, or State Bill 132, which came into effect from the start of 2021, violates women’s constitutional rights.

The law requires the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) to house a person who identifies as transgender, non-binary or intersex in a correctional facility designated for men or women based on their preference.

WoLF said the “foundational basis” of its lawsuit is that trans women prisoners are “male offenders” and pose a danger to women.

Lauren Adams, the group’s legal director, added: “To pretend that they are female, in language or what we say about them or how we talk about them, goes against the whole basis of the lawsuit.”

California’s attorney general Rob Bonta is expected to vigorously defend SB 132, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Samuel Garrett-Pate, a spokesperson for LGBTQ+ advocacy group Equality California, said: “Bonta has been a champion for the trans community during his time in the legislature and now as attorney general.”

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