Women Speak: Should men be allowed in women’s prisons?

Women’s Liberation Front hosted this discussion about an urgent issue: policies and practices allowing male prisoners to be housed in women’s correctional facilities, based on their claimed “gender identity” or “transgender status.”

At the time of this recording, the California legislature is poised to vote on SB 132, a bill that would allow incarcerated individuals to self-identify as transgender or intersex. Those individuals must then “Be housed at a correctional facility designated for men or women based on the individual’s preference.” This includes sex-specific residential programs such as the Community Prisoner Mother Program.

The press is almost silent on this issue, and the rare news stories focus almost entirely on sympathetic stories of “trans women” who want to be housed with women in order to reduce their own risks for sexual and physical assault. With the admirable exception of Christian groups, no one else in the US is talking about the serious threat to women’s safety.

Our guests, Heather Mason and April Halley, discuss their first-hand experience with this issue as feminist activists in Canada.