Compiled by a community inclusion manager from G4S-managed HMP Parc in south Wales, Released Inside documents the experiences of 13 women in five prisons across England and Wales. It looks at a range of issues including accessing medication, helping to educate wing staff and discovering their identity in prison.
HMP Parc community inclusion manager, Phil Forder, said:
“One in four prisons hold transgender people and there is a clear need to help prison staff better understand and support trans people in prison.
“It’s vital that we keep people in our care safe and sadly, transgender prisoners are more likely to suffer with depression and in some cases go on to harm themselves. This book allows transgender prisoners, who face particular challenges inside, to be heard and I would like to thank all of the people I spoke to me with great openness and courage through the course of this project.”
Director for HMP Parc, Janet Wallsgrove, said:
“When we better understand the people we look after, we are better able to support them and prevent the build-up of frustration or anxiety. This moving collection of stories will provide staff with a tangible insight on what it is like to be transgender in prison.”
Joanne, a transgender prisoner at HMP Parc highlighted the importance of sharing the experience of transitioning while in custody.
“Transgender issues are getting more visibility in the media, through celebrities such as Caitlyn Jenner and Lavern Cox, but little is known about what support is available for prisoners who want to transition. I wish that this book had been around before I decided to transition, reading through all of these different experiences even now gives me comfort, and makes me realise that I am not alone.”
Notes to Editors:Figures released by the Ministry of Justice in November last year show that one in four prisons now hold a transgender prisoner