In a recent announcement from the Colorado Department of Corrections (CDOC) and Attorney General Phil Weiser, the state of Colorado has just implemented intake procedural changes when working directly with transgender inmates.
Today, the state has reached a settlement with Lindsay Saunders-Velez, a transgender woman serving out her sentence at various state correctional facilities who filed claims against the CDOC alleging a lack of adequate housing, services, and treatment for transgender inmates.
“Colorado is on the forefront of this issue and has already implemented progressive policies aimed at the fair and dignified treatment of all transgender offenders,” said a press release from the Colorado Attorney General’s office. “This settlement reflects Colorado’s commitment to these values and continuous improvement.”
The CDOC will work with inmates on a case-by-case basis in providing housing and placement options for transgender folks and will implement a practice allowing access to female hygiene products for those in need who are housed in a male facility. The correctional facilities will also hold agency-wide trainings on the use of pronouns and have expanded medical provider responsibilities to assume the treatment and monitoring of trans folks needs at intake and post-intake.
The press release also stated that the State Claims Board has approved the settlement agreement (exact amount was unspecified), and funds will be held until Saunders-Velez is released.