by Julie Bindel
Monday, 11
May 2020
Debate
12:07

Why are we placing high-risk trans sex offenders in women’s prisons?

It creates a dangerous environment for female inmates
by Julie Bindel
Exterior view of HMP Downview, the women’s prison which set up the E Wing in the wake of the Karen White Scandal. Credit: Getty

Female prisoners are some of the most vulnerable and disenfranchised women on the planet. Most have suffered some type of male violence and end up in prison as a result of chaotic behaviour and substance abuse, which stems from childhood sexual abuse and neglect. Disproportionate numbers have been through the care system.

The women’s estate is the poor relative of the men’s, with far fewer resources. Why was the first dedicated wing set up to contain high-risk sex transgender offenders placed in a female rather than male prison? E Wing in Downview Prison, Surrey, was set up in the wake of the Karen White scandal. E Wing prisoners sleep and shower separately from the women but are allowed to mix with the female population during some leisure activities. Why could E Wing not have been set up in the men’s estate?

E Wing was previously a unit for assisting up to 16 women preparing for release. These women have now been returned to the general wing, and therefore lost hard-earned privileges.

I have campaigned on behalf of women in prison since co-founding Justice for Women in 1991, and am furious that these women now have to worry about attacks from transgender sex offenders as well as male prison staff.

Bearing in mind the high numbers of women suffering from trauma caused by abusive men, it is particularly shocking that the Prison Service (PS) consider it a workable solution to place high-risk transgender sex offenders in women’s prisons.

According to official Prison Service figures, transgender prisoners are five times more likely to carry out sex attacks on inmates at women’s jails than other prisoners. There have been seven recorded attacks since 2010 by transgender prisoners, and these figures don’t even include those prisoners who have legally changed sex.

In a report published in October 2019 by the Ministry of Justice and Her Majesty’s Prison and Probation Service, it was clearly stated that: “Individuals managed by HMPPS (PS) are able to self-declare that they are transgender and are supported to express the gender (or non-gender) with which they identify, with staff using correct pronouns.”

Despite the PS claiming to have considered the rights of all those in custody alongside transgender sex offenders, stating that “These risks must be considered fully and balanced against each other,” the policy fails to balance the rights of female prisoners and transgender inmates. Ultimately, it places the rights of trans-identified male bodied sex offenders above those of women in fear of male violence.

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VJB Minerva
VJB Minerva
2 years ago

Interesting. It is your supposition that women are merely dickless men. That a man can “become” a woman by having his p***s removed and *poof* he’s a woman??? No. Born male, always male, housed in male prisons. Male prisons can created safe and appropriate housing for their fellow males. It is not a problem that is rightly foisted off on women.

samuel.goulding
samuel.goulding
2 years ago
Reply to  VJB Minerva

You’re correct

Maple Badgero
Maple Badgero
1 year ago
Reply to  VJB Minerva

Go touch grass. Smell fresh air. Read a book. Think about other people for a change.

William MacDougall
William MacDougall
2 years ago

And why is it being done by a “conservative” government?

Fraser Bailey
Fraser Bailey
2 years ago

Because they will be attacked by the BBC and the media in general if they don’t allow this to happen.

samuel.goulding
samuel.goulding
2 years ago

Because they are not conservatives

John Jones
John Jones
2 years ago

I completely agree with Julie that trans men should not be placed in female prisons until after their transition is complete. If they were placed in prisons for men until that time, everyone would be safer. But what are the origins of this policy?

Historically it begins with the argument that gender is a “social construct”. If that is true, then differences between men are women are a kind of illusion constructed by society, one that can be disregarded provided that one is aware – woke, if you prefer- to this social construction.

From that perspective, an individual can choose his/her gender. It is not a biological fact of individual psychology, but an artifact of a patriarchal society.

The origin of that belief comes from feminist dogma itself which insists that all gender differences are merely part of the apparatus by which females are oppressed. One is not born with a female psychology, but rather trained into it, a kind of performance.

It is also essential that the true believers accept this dogma without interrogating it too closely, because it is necessary to explain away gender differences which might be the underlying reason that men are dominant.

It would introduce a alternate explanation to show why the feminist victim narrative might simply be wrong. We might actually have to introduce sociobiological explanations based on evolutionary theory instead.

You know, that science thing.

But having swallowed this tabular rasa nonsense, feminists then find themselves trapped in a self-contradiction.If gender is just a psychological, social construct, then why doesn’t gay conversion therapy work? Since sexual preference is a main aspect of gender, and gender is fluid, then sexual preference should be malleable.

But it isn’t. Gay conversion therapy doesn’t work because being gay is biologically innate in some people, just as heterosexuality is innate in the majority.

Second, if gender isn’t biologically determined, then men who claim to be women have as much right to that gender identity as cis women, don’t they? Aren’t they just throwing off the shackles of patriarchy?

And so here we are with feminists like Bindel claiming that gender is fluid, but that men who claim to be women have no right to identify as such and to be placed in women’s prisons.

But both beliefs can’t be true. Either gender is innate, gays are biologically constructed, and men and women are innately different; or gender is fluid, gay conversion therapy is possible, and men can decide to be women.

You have been hoist by your own petard, Julie, and you dont like the logical implications of your own beliefs.

But that shouldn’t be too much of a problem. Feminism has been based on willful hypocrisy for decades. Its just nice to see feminists like Bindel finally being the ones squirming to explain away their own self contradictions.

saramwhite
saramwhite
2 years ago
Reply to  John Jones

It’s impossible to change sex. No man, regardless of modifications, should be imprisoned in a women’s prison.

samuel.goulding
samuel.goulding
2 years ago
Reply to  saramwhite

Totally agree with you

Benedict Waterson
Benedict Waterson
2 years ago
Reply to  John Jones

there are contradictions between julie bindel’s own fuzzy feminist rhetoric about ‘patriarchy’ and ‘toxic masculinity’ and her own stance on this issue. She should question not just the beliefs surrounding this issue, but the beliefs feeding into them, i.e. her own core beliefs. Too difficult tho

J Cor
J Cor
2 years ago
Reply to  John Jones

If you are seriously arguing that, if I am legally allowed to apply for traditionally male scientific jobs and be fairly considered for the because I am better than most men at math, that I am therefore logically constrained to allow men in dimestore lipgloss to rape women in prison, I’m going to point out that you are making the opposite of sense.

And please don’t go around talking about how no one cares if I’m a woman scientist. People absolutely do and did, throughout history. I remember “Help Wanted: Male” and “Help Wanted: Female.” Do not attempt to convince me that I must let men in f*ck-me pumps bully lesbians into screwing them if I want to get a traditionally male job for which I am perfectly well-qualified and go to work without being blackmailed for sex or getting my ass grabbed. Just don’t even attempt it.

Bill Brookman
Bill Brookman
2 years ago
Reply to  John Jones

I think you have committed an act of friendly fire.

Unless you know from a separate source that Julie Bindel supports the nonsense you have so eloquently demolished, then I would suggest she is not expressing an opinion about daft legislation, just bewailing its consequence.

John Jones
John Jones
2 years ago
Reply to  Bill Brookman

Bindel is a self-confessed feminist. My point was that feminism caused the absurd legislation she now bewails.

samuel.goulding
samuel.goulding
2 years ago
Reply to  John Jones

Really good points, thanks

Gerald gwarcuri
Gerald gwarcuri
2 years ago

The answer to the question posed in the title of this post is so obvious as to require no need to state it ( which, “needless to say” is precisely why it should be clearly stated ). The society we commonly refer to as “the West”, in its most elite cultural enclaves, has completely taken leave of its senses. Political correctness has replaced “horse sense”. I dare say that the likes of men like Lincoln and Churchill would have ridiculed the current crop of social justice warriors to shame by simply pointing out the profound stupidity of their ideas as taken to the present extremes.

David McCabe
David McCabe
2 years ago

Actually, it’s not the West that puts up with this nonsense. It’s the Anglosphere. I don’t see this stupidity happening in Spain or Germany or Italy or France.

samuel.goulding
samuel.goulding
2 years ago
Reply to  David McCabe

Agreed

samuel.goulding
samuel.goulding
2 years ago

Spot on Gerald

Ray Hall
Ray Hall
2 years ago

Agree that the mess is caused by the insistence that all differences between the sexes must be social in origin,but totally agree with Ms Bindel that women prisoners should not be subject to any increased risk of molestation . To be blunt – prisoners often lie- and , as we see from those ridiculous sport events where “trans” women compete with “cis” women, the latter tend to have a strength advantage due to their male muscles. So the women prisoners are yet again victims of unequal power in the most primal sense of the word.

samuel.goulding
samuel.goulding
2 years ago
Reply to  Ray Hall

Agree totally with you

Giulia Khawaja
Giulia Khawaja
2 years ago

When is society going to admit that trans ” women” are NOT WOMEN?

If these people don’t want to be the males they were born as they should be put into a third sex category.

Maple Badgero
Maple Badgero
1 year ago
Reply to  Giulia Khawaja

When it some how manage to come true.

Penelope Newsome
Penelope Newsome
2 years ago

Transgender men and transgender women, if they must exist, should have all their own facilities- in prisons, in sport, in hospitals, in public conveniences, everywhere in public places.

Maple Badgero
Maple Badgero
1 year ago

So you’re saying transgender people, men and women, should share a bathroom?

Juilan Bonmottier
Juilan Bonmottier
2 years ago

“Why could E Wing not have been set up in the men’s estate?”???

You really need to someone to answer this question???

Yadda yadda abusive men… yadda yaddda blah blah… victim women… victim women yaddah yaddah… bad men… bad bad men yaddah yaddah victim women…. Er… wil this do? (with apologies to Phil Space at Private Eye)

Andrew Baldwin
Andrew Baldwin
2 years ago

Peter Franklin should have made some mention of the coalition government’s wrenching changes to UK consumer price series while in office, unsupported by any kind of logic. Before the coalition government the UK had the RPI, a household-oriented consumer price series for upratings and the UK HICP, somewhat confusingly called the CPI, a macroeconomic price series, as the target inflation indicator for the Bank of England. Unlike the previous target inflation indicator, RPIX, the UK HICP excluded housing prices, but this defect was thought to be temporary, to be resolved when Eurostat added an owner-occupied housing (OOH) component based on the net acquisitions approach to the HICP. The coalition government steamrollered over these sensible policies, starting with uprating public sector pensions and some benefits to the CPI instead of the RPI, a purpose for which the CPI was completely unsuitable. In 2013, another macroeconomic index, the CPIH, started to be published. Rather than incorporating a net acquisitions approach to OOH, it incorporated a rental equivalence approach. At the same time, the RPI lost its status as a national statistic. It appeared that the coalition government had adopted the J.R.R. Tolkien approach to consumer price series, one index to rule them all and in the darkness bind them, and its ultimate objective was to make that duck-billed platypus of a seies, the CPIH, that one index. This was also likely why they brought in Mark Carney as the first foreigner to be Governor of the Bank of England, since the J.R.R. Tolkien approach to consumer price series has been the dominant ideology at the Bank of Canada for a long time. There is currently no household-oriented consumer price series that is a National Statistic that is published every month. The coalition government took the National Statistic status away from the RPI in 2013, allegedly to replace it with the RPIJ, which is no longer calculated at all.

666bobtodd
666bobtodd
2 years ago

It a bit more entertainment for these womens drab lives, nothing wrong with sex, just the bigots who try to interfere with normal peoples lives

Adrian Smith
Adrian Smith
2 years ago

It is interesting that you cite HPC as a white elephant, whilst believing we need to lower our carbon footprint. We are going to want more energy, particularly in the form of electricity. Wind farms (bird mincers) and rows of totally uneconomic solar panels are not going to cut the mustard.

William Cameron
William Cameron
2 years ago

No mention of increasing the population by a million or more every three years while cutting public services -madness.

Basil Chamberlain
Basil Chamberlain
2 years ago

“What was literally a party of government is now a joke party of the loony centre.” This unfortunate transition, of course, had happened to the Liberals once before.

The truth, of course, is that, the Lib Dems were doomed when they accepted the offer of a referendum on Alternative Vote in return for joining the coalition. They should have demanded proper Proportional Representation, with the change to be decided in parliament without a referendum, as the price for their support of either of the two larger parties. Gordon Brown would probably have been desperate enough to concede this and the Lib-Dems would have been in a tremendously advantageous position ever after.

Clegg could also have made the choice to avoid a formal coalition, choosing to lend conditional support to a Conservative government on a vote-by-vote basis. This would essentially have given him a veto over any legislation the Lib Dems opposed, and they would have avoided being the scapegoats for unpopular Tory policies.

The whole thing was a strategic disaster on the part of the Lib Dems.

Basil Chamberlain
Basil Chamberlain
2 years ago

“A subsidy for failure that rewards the courses and institutions that make the least contribution to their students’ future prospects.”

One should be careful about narrowly defining students’ “future prospects” according to earning power, of course. When I went to university, in the pre-fee halcyon days of the late 1990s, it never occurred to me that I was there primarily to improve my earning power. I thought I was there to become a better rounded human being and to learn how to live more fully.

“And, of course, those responsible ” the fat cats of the higher education establishment ” get paid regardless.”

That’s because of the consummate stupidity of thinking that the business model was ever appropriate for education. Straightforwardly, we need a reversion to a traditional model of education in which teachers take responsibility for helping young people decide what kind of adults they want to be and what kind of adult lives they want to lead. Decisions about teaching methods, research priorities, course content and course structure should be made as far as possible by individual members of staff, or at departmental level if absolutely necessary. Larger strategic questions could be decided democratically by majority vote, all employed lecturers having one vote. Managerial positions would therefore be few, and ideally, temporary – managers would be faculty members promoted for a fixed period, and expecting to return to the lecture hall in due course.

Fraser Bailey
Fraser Bailey
2 years ago

For the latest on all this insanity, check out this Tim Pool podcast from the US:

https://www.youtube.com/wat

I don’t think there is any hope for western civilisation.

johnwiede
johnwiede
2 years ago

its the old patriachy rearing its snake head.Solidarity to annihilate patriarchy leaving no part intact. Women will never be free until they put up a common front against this remnant from antiquity

Hilary Baxter
Hilary Baxter
2 years ago

Shocking, and it’s appalling that so much of the press (including the BBC) is so Pro-Trans rather than supporting women’s sex based rights. Interestingly, I am the Oxford branch officer for the Women’s Equality Party, and their HQ is currently trying to shut down our Fb page because I’ve been supporting women’s sex based rights ahead of Trans rights, even though pro Trans support of Stonewall and LGBTQ+ rights are all over other WEP Fb pages such as Lewisham and Exeter. The Women’s Equality Party is not about promoting rights for women, it’s about silencing us in favour of trans rights. Many have left the party over the last 12 months because of this.

Danielle Valjean
Danielle Valjean
1 year ago

Thank you for sharing. I was sexually assaulted by a transgender male-to-female person when I was staying in a woman’s shelter a few months ago.

Most trans women I know are extremely, vulnerable people more likely to be harmed than to harm someone else. They have all been people with severe trauma and mental health issues. I myself have Dissociative Identity Disorder and many of my parts consider themsleves male. So at least parts of me have experienced gender dyspepsia. I have known other trauma survivors with DID who have transitioned.

It is a complex issue involving people who are confused, traumatized and horribly bullied. I am sure the dangerous individuals who have transitioned to the opposite sex are in the minority, but the possibility can’t be ignored. Especially in a setting like a prison!

Maple Badgero
Maple Badgero
1 year ago

Keep crying about it in your comments section on a small website, on an even smaller report about an even smaller group of people.

Last edited 1 year ago by Maple Badgero
cajwbroomhill
cajwbroomhill
2 years ago

We need no positive climate change policies, since our manmade CO2output, as a proportion of global, is negligible.
It is one third of 1%. Dodgy, unproven hypotheses anyway. No fall in atmospheric pCO2 despite lockdown impacts.
Decarbonisation must be ended and the Climate Change Acts (2008,9) repealed asap.
We must ignore the “Green Blob”.

Lex Pagani
Lex Pagani
2 years ago

The Times article linked in your piece says; “Male prisoners who were transferred to women’s jails during gender reassignment and women inmates who are transitioning committed seven of the 124 sex attacks recorded between 2010 and 2018”. Whilst one is too many, it’s hardly a tsunami warranting much in the way of action, is it?

As for wanting male trans inmates to be housed at male prisons, lol, I wouldn’t wish that on my worst enemy.

saramwhite
saramwhite
2 years ago
Reply to  Lex Pagani

One case warrants action.

John Jones
John Jones
2 years ago

I see you’re also trotting out that old canard “male violence”. This is the same rhetorical trick Trump uses when he talks about the “Chinese virus”- as if disease had a nationality.

For the record, females attack men and children at the same rate as men attack their female partners and children. Men are the ones who suffer physical damage 38-45% of the time. The most abusive relationships are between lesbian partners.

Only in the category of extreme violence leading to death does men’s violence against women exceed women’s violence against men. But even those statistics are suspect, because many women escape punishment by portraying themselves as victims who killed in self defense, a defense denied most men who murder their wives.

Violence isn’t gendered, and your attempt to portray men as the abusive gender is a form of sexist stereotyping.

People are starting to notice the rhetorical sleight of hand Julie.

Maybe time to change the record.

Maple Badgero
Maple Badgero
1 year ago

Also just to correct these people who can’t even type in simple words into a google search bar. Trans men are men, meanings trans men don’t go into prisons for women. Trans women are women, meaning trans women go to prisons for women. But that won’t matter, none of you are going to make it to 2025 seeing that you are all so old and decide to continue to live in the 1950’s.

Fraser Bailey
Fraser Bailey
2 years ago

Well, Julie, it was your people and your belief system that is responsible for the endless madness of contemporary western societies. You can’t really complain.

prandichristian
prandichristian
2 years ago

Trans women are women, Julie

ms_fit17
ms_fit17
2 years ago

then seahorses are horses, christian. predatory male identity politics and opportunities to rape are prioritized over female safety no matter how many attacks happen.

Mela King
Mela King
2 years ago

Christian – genuinely, can you put forward an argument, rather than repeating a mantra? In what way are they women? How is this determined? What are the bases for your assertion?

Maple Badgero
Maple Badgero
1 year ago
Reply to  Mela King

Sense you asked. A female is an individual who identifies as female. A male is an individual who identifies as male. If you describe a female as someone who can have babies, then you are wrong, because there are several individuals who are assigned female at birth and identify as females yet can not have children. If you describe a male as someone who has sperm and makes a female pregnant, then you are wrong again, because we all know that not all males can do so. So the answer to your question absurd question “in what way are they women?” Is that they identify as a woman, and if you were to try to argue otherwise, you are not just “expressing your beliefs” you would be forcing your beliefs and trying to invalidate someone else’s beliefs. Meaning if I were to ask “in what way are they Christian?” You would call me stupid and say it’s based off what they believe in. Although, because you are clearly uneducated. Here’s a simple lesson:
1. Stop caring
2. Mind your own business
3. Try to see things from another’s perspective

Maple Badgero
Maple Badgero
1 year ago

This. Is. The. Funniest. Thing. I. Have. EVER. Seen.