The Boston Police Department has issued antidiscrimination guidelines that offer transgender individuals new protections during searches and bookings.
Reached after lengthy negotiations between police and the Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition (MTPC), the new guidelines include:
- Police must address transgender individuals by their adopted name and must use appropriate pronouns.
- Transgender individuals cannot be subjected to additional invasive search or frisk procedures.
- Transgender prisoners can request the gender of the officers conducting the search.
- Transgender prisoners are to be transported alone and held in a cell without other prisoners, whenever possible.
“We’re really excited to see the [Boston police] step up and release guidelines around this,” said Jesse Begenyi, interim director of MTPC. “We will now have a baseline of how police officers should interact with the transgender community. Collaborations like this are what is going to change the culture.”
Javier Pagan, the Boston Police Department’s liaison to the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community, said the policies make it clear that transgender people are to be treated with dignity and respect, and will afford them a new level of protection.
“Now we have something concrete that officers have to follow,” Pagan said. “It’s something the department takes seriously.”
The policies will become part of officer training, he said.