On June 30, 2021, TakeRoot and the Sylvia Rivera Law Project released It’s Still War in Here: A Statewide Report on the Trans, Gender Non-Conforming, Intersex (TGNCI) Experience in New York Prisons and the Fight for Trans Liberation, Self-Determination and Freedom.
The report sheds light on the ongoing crisis for Transgender and Gender Nonconforming (TGNC) people in New York State prisons. It draws on 44 in-depth written surveys completed by incarcerated TGNC people, including excerpts from their writing, to demonstrate the discriminatory, violent and abusive experiences faced by TGNC people in New York State prisons. Findings include lack of access to medical services, verbal abuse, physical and sexual violence by corrections officials, discrimination in programing, and retaliation for placing grievances.
The report lays out comprehensive recommendations as harm reduction measures, as Sylvia Rivera Law Project members continue their work towards a world without prisons. These urgent recommendations include: the creation of TGNCI housing units within existing facilities, creating a facility transfer process to address the needs of TGNCI people, updating DOCCS procedures to hold staff accountable for verbal abuse and violence, addressing the crisis of sexual violence in prison, improving the quality of and access to health care and mental health services, protecting against discrimination in programming, improving the grievance system, monitoring for retaliation, and allowing TGNCI people to determine their gender fully and without reprisal.