This workshop will discuss how discrimination in employment, schools, and housing have propelled LGBTQ+ persons into the system of mass incarceration at disproportionate rates, where they often fall victim to sexual violence, harassment, and anti-LGBT+ bias. A recent study by the Williams Institute found that the incarceration rate of self-identified lesbian, gay, or bisexual persons was more than 3 times that of the US adult population. Once incarcerated, LGBT people are sexually assaulted by other inmates at a disproportionate rate. Regarding incarcerated transgender people, a 2009 survey of California prisons found they experience sexual victimization at a rate 13 times higher than those who are not transgender. Similarly, the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJ) estimated that incarcerated transgender people are almost ten times more likely to have been sexually abused than others in the general prison population. The panel will focus on litigation skills for prison litigation including the Prison Litigation Reform Act (PLRA) and the administrative grievance process, the use of Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA) in litigation, and constitutional claims. Panelists are litigators who have been counsel in some of the leading cases challenging corrections policies and practices concerning LGBTQ people and people living with HIV. As such, the panel will discuss Edmo v. Idaho, a challenge to Idaho Department of Corrections ban on gender confirmation surgery for transgender persons; Diamond v. Georgia, a challenge to Georgia DOC’s freeze-frame policy denying incarcerated persons access to hormone therapy and other forms of care; Hicklin v. Precythe, a challenge to an identical Missouri DOC’s freeze-frame policy, and Dorn v. Michigan DOC, a challenge to Michigan DOC’s policy directive that disciplined people living with HIV with administrative segregation. Panelists will also discuss policy and legislative efforts currently underway to address harms that LGBT+ people face while in state custody, federal custody, and immigration detention.
Location: Franklin 9
Speakers: Chinyere Ezie (Center for Constitutional Rights); Demoya Gordon (Law Enforcement Bureau, New York City Commission on Human Rights); Richard Saenz (Lambda Legal); Amy Whelan (National Center for Lesbian Rights)
CLE Materials: I, II