In all of the UK’s constituent countries, rape is defined as penetration with a penis, ergo it can only be carried out by male persons. In spite of a wealth of evidence, the existence of trans identifying males who have used their penises to rape women and/or children is a fact that trans allies appear to be in complete denial about.
Concerns about such people being in women’s prisons are, in my experience, angrily dismissed by trans allies who display a callous disregard for the feelings not only of their victims but also of the unfortunate women who are forced to share their living spaces with them.
An inevitable consequence of making it easier to change one’s gender is that more convicted rapists will end up in women’s prisons. This is not “equating transgender people to rapists”; it is certainly not saying all or most or a large number or even a significant minority of male-born trans are criminals of any sort. It is, however, saying that some are. It may only be a tiny percentage but it is surely reason enough to take women’s fears about having to share segregated spaces seriously.
News stories about crimes that don’t focus on imprisonment are on a separate page here.
Keep Prisons Single Sex
Official guidelines on the care of transgender prisoners state that a male who has a Gender Recognition Certificate meaning that he is legally a woman must be housed in the female estate, regardless of whether or not he has had any ‘reassignment’ surgery. A male who identifies as a woman, but who does not have a GRC, can still apply to be housed in a women’s prison.
News stories, articles and blogs
‘I was sexually assaulted in a women’s prison… by a fellow inmate with male genitalia’: Read Amy’s story and decide – can it be right to put trans sex offenders in female jails? Julie Bindel in The Mail 23.07.21
Women come second, once again The Critic 23.07.21
The Problem with Prisons WEP 04.07.21
The court judgement that confirms women pay for trans rights James Kirkup in The Spectator 03.07.21
Keep men out of women’s prisons Jo Bartosch 30.10.20
Seven sex attacks in women’s jails by transgender convicts The Times 11.05.20
Sorry, prisoners: calling yourself a woman doesn’t make it so India Willoughby Sunday Times 15.03.20
Scots trans law is threat to women, says ex-head of prison The Times 19.01.20
Transgender woman to be sent to men’s prison after ‘campaign of burglaries’ Liverpool Echo 14.01.20
Transgender prison wing ‘failed its inmates’ The Times 04.01.20
Paedophile prisoner loses gender surgery bid The Times 21.12.19
Female prisoner takes government to court after alleged assault by transgender inmate The Sunday Times 03.11.19
Specialist officers for transgender inmates The Times 29.07.19
Trans women ‘put female inmates at risk’ The Times 14.05.19
Are they stupid? InsideTime 02.05.19
Isolating trans prisoners ‘is not an easy answer’ The Times 21.03.19
Letting criminals self-identify gender ‘putting women at risk’ The Times 14.03.19
Statement on transgender prisoners Centre for Crime and Justice Studies 25.02.19
Transgender murderer Paris Green to have reassignment surgery on NHS The Times 19.11.18
Is the BBC scared of the transgender debate? James Kirkup 20.7.18
How many transgender inmates are there? BBC News online 13.8.18 See directly above for James Kirkup’s criticisms of this article and below for more accurate figures.
Transgender killers split up by prison chiefs after groping antics at high security jail Daily Record 07.05.18
Governors fight putting trans inmates in women’s jails The Times 04.06.18
‘Trans-imposters’ InsideTime 30.09.16
Prison news stories from other countries
USA: Statement on California Women’s Prisons WoLF 08.04.21
USA: California prisons grapple with hundreds of transgender inmates requesting new housing Los Angeles Times 05.04.21
Canada: Trans jailbird accused of sexually assaulting female con Toronto Sun 19.11.20
Ireland: Prison officers couldn’t search trans inmate for concealed weapon gript.ie 20.10.20
Ireland: Prison officers demand guidelines on transgender inmates 18.10.20
Ireland: Barbie Kardashian: The Full Story – Barbie Kardashian, a biological male who’s had no hormone treatment or surgery, and has sworn to kill and rape women, has been placed in a women’s prison by the Irish authorities. GRIPT 29.09.20
Canada: As transgender rights improve, prisons struggle with tough decisions The Star 22.02.20
USA: Transgender inmate accused of rape Illinois Times 20.02.20
Canada: Convicted murderer arguing to be moved to women’s prison The Post Millennial 19.01.20
Canada: The alarm has been sounded, who’s going to respond? Heather Mason 05.12.19
Canada: Trans killers, baby rapists terrifying female inmates Toronto Sun 29.11.19
Canada: Male-Bodied Rapists Are Being Imprisoned With Women. Why Do so Few People Care? April Halley 12.10.19
Ireland: Male-bodied transgender inmate housed with women Law Society Gazette 18.09.19
Video: The Truth About Women’s Prisons Pulling The Trigger Podcast (Canada) 08.08.19
Sex offender undergoing male to female transition being held in Dublin women’s jail Dublin Live 21.07.19
Transgender prisoner investigated for sexual assault behind bars Stuff NZ 10.05.19
Canada’s prison system overhauls transgender inmate policy CBC News 31.01.18
Transgender bathroom battle smolders in Fort Worth federal prison Star-Telegram 22.02.17
South Carolina inmate convicted in killing seeks sex change CBS News 18.04.16
A majority prisoners who apply to transition are sex offenders
In his written submission to the 2015 Parliamentary Transgender Enquiry, Dr James Barrett, Chair of the British Association of Gender Identity Specialists refers to:
Up to half of trans inmates may be sex offenders The Times 19.11.17
Video: David Davies, MP, questions the President of the Prison Governors Association on impact of males in women prisons
Stephen Wood aka Karen White
This transgender madness is now a danger to women Express 14.10.18
TRANSGENDER prisoner Stephen Wood – jailed for life this week for rape and sexual assault on two women at a female prison – highlights the danger of allowing men to use gender self-identification as a means to pursue their perverted acts. Calling himself Karen White, the brutal sexual predator had not even begun the process of gender reassignment and was still legally a man.
The cautionary tale of Karen White James Kirkup 11.10.18
“Karen White is a rapist and child abuser who has committed several acts of sexual violence against vulnerable people. One of the women Karen White raped was pregnant. Karen White is now going to spend a long time in jail.”
Karen White: how ‘manipulative’ transgender inmate attacked again Guardian 11.10.18
“Transgender politics – like any politics – can be divisive. Yet in the case of Karen White, who is legally still a man but was put in a female-only prison, both sides of the transgender rights debate are united in the belief mistakes were made.”
“Having entered the UK prison system as a transgender woman, the odds were stacked in Karen White’s favour from the start.
No matter that aside from donning a padded bra, wig, dress and heels, the 52-year-old was still, anatomically and legally, a male — not to mention a convicted paedophile on remand for GBH and burglary.”
Scottish prison service rejects call for ‘transgender wings’ in jails The Herald 15.09.18
“Scottish prison chiefs have rejected the idea of holding transgender inmates on separate wings, after concerns were raised that their policy was putting other prisoners at risk. Campaigners have claimed that the current policy, under which Scottish prisons are advised to house male-bodied transgender inmates in women’s prisons, is “open to abuse”.”
“The story of transgender policy in Britain today is a story of political failure, where many people fail to do their job and speak openly about matters of clear public interest. Writing about it this year, I’ve grown accustomed to that failure, though no less angry about it.”
“A leading prison reformer has said prisoners who have committed violent offences against women should not be able to transfer to women’s prisons if they have not legally changed their gender, after it emerged that a transgender inmate had sexually assaulted fellow prisoners after transferring to a women’s prison.”
“The prison service has apologised after a transgender inmate, charged with raping a woman, sexually assaulted four fellow inmates just days after being remanded into an all female jail.
Convicted paedophile Karen White, who was born Stephen Wood, was undergoing gender reassignment, but had not undergone full surgery, when she was accused of repeatedly raping a woman in 2016.”
Trans rapists are a danger in women’s jails Janice Turner 08.09.18
“I’d love to meet those who signed off this decision. What would they say to the four women who, within days of her transfer to New Hall prison in West Yorkshire, White had sexually assaulted? Confining a rapist in a women’s prison, among vulnerable inmates including rape victims, is like locking a fox in a henhouse. Yet they merely followed government guidelines “that prisoners should generally be housed in the estate that matches their expressed gender”.”
Why was a transgender rapist put in a women’s prison? James Kirkup 07.09.18
“If you were deciding where to house a convicted sex offender accused of repeatedly raping a woman, where’s the last place on earth you would put that person? How about a building full of vulnerable women, many of whom had previously suffered sexual assault and abuse? A building locked and secured so that those women could not get out and could not get away from that convicted sex offender?”
Are female prisoners at risk from transgender inmates? James Kirkup 20.7.18
“We have women’s prisons for the same reason we have women’s toilets, women’s refuges, women’s changing rooms, women’s hostels – to keep women safe from those male-bodied people who might do them harm. To keep women safe from people with penises who might use those penises to do things to women that women do not want to happen.”
Josh Jackman of Pink News wrote a typically silly piece and managed to surpass even himself with the sheer insanity of his tweet about the rapist of two underage girls, Martin Ponting. Ponting received a life sentence for the rapes back in 1995. Some ten years or so into his sentence he wrote, “I have changed my name to that of a female to prove to the authorities and everyone concerned that I am very serious about my gender and that I do not feel right being a man.” He reportedly had £10,000 worth of surgery on the NHS and, under his new name of Jessica Winfield, he was transferred to a women’s prison early in 2017, to the horror of his victims, one of whom commented,
A rapist in a women’s prison? Society has lost the plot Brendan O’Neill 11.09.18
“Let’s be clear: it is wrong and cruel to make female prisoners live with a rapist. Whatever their crimes, women prisoners have a right to expect the utmost safety. These women should not be made to share their living quarters with someone serving a life sentence for committing serious crimes against young women.”
No Males in Women’s Jails!
Women protest opposite HMP Downview on Saturday 30 March 2019 in response to news that ‘High-risk’ transgender inmates at Downview mix with women. For more about the situation in women’s prisons, see stories linked to below.