San Francisco Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi took the first step today toward housing transgender inmates according to their preferred gender.
San Francisco Sheriff's Department officials said transgender women inmates living in County Jail No. 4, an all- men's jail, will soon be able to take part in programming at the all-women's jail, County Jail No. 2.
Department staff and inmates must first go through cultural competency training, which will begin next month and take about a month to complete, sheriff's officials said.
"The high majority of municipal jails and prisons in this country make invisible, suppress or isolate inmates who are transgender," Mirkarimi said in a statement. "The driving reason is for their protection. However, this practice comes at a dehumanizing cost."
The cost often is abuse and high recidivism rates because of neglect in jail and after the inmates are released, sheriff's officials said.