LGBT in LAPD Jails

April 15, 2012

LAPD Announces New Policies Pertaining To The Transgender Community

The Transgender Law Center is applauding the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) for adopting new policies and procedures for questioning and housing members of the transgender community.

The first acknowledgement comes in adopting separate housing facilities for transgender inmates.

An LAPD spokesperson said this inmate population will soon be housed in a separate location at the downtown Metropolitan Detention Center. The facility will also provide medical treatment, including hormones, to detainees.

The move was announced earlier this week at a meeting in Hollywood.  The LAPD said they believe this will allow for a “more safe and secure environment” for transgender inmates and hopes incidents of violence against them by non-LGBT inmates will be reduced.

The LA Times reported that although these changes will apply to city, not county jails.  Until this time, they said, transgender women had been housed with biological men.

The second newly-enacted mandate pertains to traffic stops.  Police Chief Charlie Beck said that officers are now required to respect a person’s gender identification during stops and searches.   The Mercury News reported that frisking or questioning an individual for the sole purpose of learning their anatomical gender is strictly prohibited.

Members of the transgender community have said the policy changes are viewed as an “enormous victory”.

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