Transgender people arrested in LA will be housed in a women's jail for their 'safety'.
By the end of the month, the Los Angeles Police Department will open a women’s module at its downtown Metropolitan Detention Center with a special section for up to 24 transgender detainees.
Captain Dave Lindsay, commander of the department’s jail division, made the announcement last night (12 April) at a meeting in Hollywood between transgender people and police Chief Charlie Beck and members of the city’s Police Commission.
Lindsay called the move a 'major change', reported the Los Angeles Times.
He said the center will allow for 'an environment that’s safe and secure, as there’s been a history of violence against transgender people' in jail.
Lindsay added that transgender arrestees will be given access to male and female clothes as well as medical treatment, including hormones.
Under current regulations, transgender people are housed at the nearest station to where they are arrested and those who are biologically male are put in jails with men, putting them at risk of violence.
The decision has been applauded by Karina Samala, director of the Transgender Working Group, which has been discussing changes in police policy and regulations with LAPD officials since 2007.