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Trans prisoner may be moved to women’s prison

Joe Williams October 29, 2015

Tara Hudson may be moved to a female prison after thousands of people signed an online petition.

A trans woman who was ‘humiliated’ and sent to a violent men’s prison may now be moved to a female jail after more than 55,000 people signed a petition calling for the change.

It emerged earlier this week that 26 year old trans woman Tara Hudson has been sentenced to 12 weeks in the all-male Bristol Prison after an assault.

However, magistrates sent the young woman – who admitted a bar assault – to a male prison to serve her 12-week sentence because her passport says she is still legally a man.

Current policy states that a Gender Recognition Certificate is required for trans prisoners to be placed in the correct prison for their gender, which Ms Hudson did not have despite living full-time as female for six years.

Her MP Ben Howlett spoke out against the treatment, and raised the issue before Parliament’s Women and Equalities Select Committee yesterday, while Lib Dem leader Tim Farron has also said he will raise the case.

However – after the Change.org petition attracted thousands of signatures – Ms Hudson may now be moved to a female prison.

A Prison Service spokesman said: “It is long-standing policy to place offenders according to their legally recognised gender.

“However, our guidelines allow room for discretion, and in such cases medical experts will review the circumstances in order to protect the emotional well-being of the person concerned.”

In further good news for the inmate, it was also revealed yesterday Ms Hudson has now been given leave to appeal against the sentence itself for the assault conviction.

The prisoner will appeal before Bristol Crown Court on Friday, appealing against the severity of the sentence, arguing she should be given a non-custodial sentence instead.

Her mother Jackie Brooklyn told the Bath Chronicle that she is hoping for a non-prison sentence, such as an electronic tag or alcohol awareness.

She said: “I think it’s appropriate she comes out on a tag.

“There’s been so many people signing the petition that hopefully something gets done. It’s a step in the right direction.”

More: Crime, LGBT, Politics, Tara Hudson, Trans, trans rights, UK

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