The Canadian Bar Association had issued a series of recommendations and directives to the Correctional Service of Canada demanding violent male criminals be accommodated in women’s prisons, and to ensure their biological sex is never recorded.
In a letter dated December 4, 2020 the Canadian Bar Association (CBA) denounced a draft proposal by the Correctional Service of Canada (CSC) that they claim was not lax enough in its treatment and transfer of trans-identified prisoners. The CSC Commissioner’s Directive currently takes into consideration operative status and any overriding safety concerns for staff and other inmates in the movement of trans-identified inmates, but the CBA claimed those policies were discriminatory.
“In our view, [Commissioner’s Directive 100] is based on the incorrect assumption that people are fundamentally men or women (or intersex) based on biology at birth,” the CBA writes, “we recommend that the policy be based on the assumption that people have the right to be placed in institutions that reflect their gender identity if that is their choice.”
The CBA goes on to suggest that almost no health or safety concerns be taken into consideration in most cases, including in transfers and double-bunking. On page 4 of the letter, the CBA writes that transfers should be made “without exception.”
“We recommend that CSC implement a policy of gender identity placement if that is the preference, without exception. In practice, the application of this exception has led to some trans women being denied placement at women’s prisons based on risk speculation.”
The letter asserts that trans prisoners are at “higher risk” of violence than non-trans inmates, and that their safety and comfort should take paramount above all other considerations. On page 4, the CBA seems to argue that behaviourally difficult trans inmates may be experiencing “institutional adjustment” that may resolve if they were moved to a lower security institution.
Going even further, the CBA recommends that a prisoner’s biological sex never be recorded or maintained. On page 3 of the letter, the CBA states that it does “not find it appropriate to record an individual’s sex in the Offender Management System (OMS), or to expect prisoners to disclose their sex or gender.”
The letter was issued on behalf of the CBA and its 36,000 members, which includes lawyers, notaries, academics and law students. In 2009, the CBA established a Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Community section (SOGIC) which focused exclusively on issues pertaining to “LGBTQ2SI+” legal matters. The 200-member SOGIC section has since been responsible for a number of controversial trans activist pushes, including crafting a pronoun policy in British Columbia courts which required all lawyers to declare their pronouns.
One prominent lead of SOGIC is non-binary lawyer Adrienne Smith, who most infamously demonstrated support for Jonathan/Jessica Yaniv — a trans-identified male who made waves after targeting female Muslim and Sikh immigrant salon workers with demands they provide genital waxing services to him. When the women would demonstrate religious hesitation to do so, Yaniv would launch lawsuits and campaigns of racist abuse against their businesses.