General Order 41.6
Service to Transgender Individuals

Last Revised: 03-01-2017

SUBJECT: Service to Transgender Individuals

This order consists of the following numbered sections:

41.6.1    Definitions

41.6.2    Policy

41.6.3    Determining Gender Identity

41.6.4    Calls for Service Involving Transgender Individuals

41.6.5    Stop and Frisk of Transgender Individuals

41.6.6    Arrests Involving Transgender Individuals

41.6.7    Housing of Transgender Arrestees

41.6.8    Strip Searches of Transgender Individuals

41.6.9    Juvenile Transgender Arrestees

41.6.10    Medical Treatment of Transgender Arrestees

41.6.11    Records of Transgender Individuals

41.6.1 Definitions

When used in this policy, the following terms are defined as follows:

I.    Cell – Any area, space, or enclosure, wherein a prisoner is locked or placed, which prohibits the prisoner’s freedom of movement.

II.    Gender Identity or Expression – A gender-related appearance or behavior of an individual, regardless of the individual’s gender at birth.

III.    Intersex – A set of medical conditions that features a congenital anomaly of the reproductive and sexual system. A person with an intersex condition is born with sex chromosomes, external genitalia, or an internal reproductive system that is not considered “standard” for either male or female” (Intersex Society of North America). “Hermaphrodite” is an out of date terminology that is no longer appropriate to describe a person with non-standard genitalia.

IV.    Prisoner or Inmate – A person who has been arrested and is being held, transported, treated, booked, or otherwise detained pending arraignment, release, adjudication, transfer to another facility, or otherwise being processed or handled.

V.    Processing Area – A room or space used for processing, questioning, or examining prisoners. While in these areas, the prisoner shall be under continuous control or supervision of agency personnel and may be restrained to a fixed object that is designed and intended only for this use.

VI.    Strip Search – The search of a prisoner conducted in a private and secure area where the prisoner removes or arranges the prisoner’s clothing to allow a visual inspection of the genitals, buttocks, anus, breasts and undergarments performed in accordance with Olympia Police Department General Order 76.1 Strip Searches.

VII.    Transgender – Refers to any person whose identity or behavior differs from traditional gender expectations. This term includes transsexual individuals, cross-dressers, androgynous individuals, and others whose appearance or characteristics are perceived to be gender atypical.

VIII.    Cross Dresser – A term that refers to people who wear clothing or makeup not traditionally associated with their gender identity. Cross-dressing is a form of gender expression that is not necessarily indicative of a person’s gender identity.

41.6.2 POLICY

I.    The Olympia Police Department shall not limit services to any individual on the basis of an individual’s actual or perceived gender identity or expression. Employees of the Olympia Police Department will interact with members of transgender communities in a manner that is professional, respectful, and courteous.

II.    Members will treat transgender persons in a manner appropriate to the individual’s gender identity, which includes addressing them by their stated name if different from their legal name and will use personal pronouns appropriate to the person’s gender identity.

41.6.3 Determining Gender Identity

I.    When a situation arises that involves gender identification, the member shall inquire how the individual should be addressed (e.g., Sir, Miss, Ms.) and the name which should be used. This name shall be noted as an alias (AKA) if it differs from the individual’s legal name.

II.    In the absence of self-identification by the subject individual, members may use government-issued identification to determine gender identity.

III.    Members shall not require proof of an individual’s gender or inquire about details of an individual’s anatomy in order to determine an individual’s gender.

41.6.4 Calls for Service Involving Transgender Individuals

Requests for service or complaints generated by transgender individuals shall be addressed or investigated in a manner that is consistent with Department policy. A member shall not fail to respond to a call for service or complaint on the basis of the gender identity or expression and/or sexual orientation of the caller or complainant.

41.6.5 Stop and Frisk of Transgender Individuals

I.    During a stop and frisk, members shall respect the gender identification expressed or presented by the individual.

II.    Transgender individuals shall not be subject to more invasive search or frisk procedures than non-transgender individuals.

41.6.6 Searches and Transports Involving Transgender Individuals

I.    Members shall not search any person solely for the purpose of determining that person’s gender.

A.    Information the arresting officer obtains about gender identity will be shared with Department members who will have subsequent interaction with the individual.

B.    Requests to remove clothing or accessories due to safety and security concerns such as the removal of prosthetics and clothes of the presenting gender, wigs, and cosmetic items shall be consistent with requirements for the removal of similar items for non-transgender individuals.

II.    Transgender arrestees will be transported separately from other arrestees, when practical.

41.6.7 Housing of Transgender Prisoners

I.    While staff may not perform a search to determine an inmate’s gender, Corrections staff may use information gained from an intake pat search to make decisions about housing and future searches.

II.    Staff will not make housing decisions based solely on the transgender or intersex inmate’s genitalia or sex assigned at birth.

III.    Staff will make housing placement decisions regarding transgender arrestees on a case by case basis considering the following priorities:

A.    The inmate’s health and safety

B.    Management and security issues presented by housing

C.    Available evidence such as legal identification, criminal history, and local record system entries.

D.    The inmate’s own views with respect to his or her own safety shall be given serious consideration.

IV.    Corrections staff will ensure offenders in gender transition receive items necessary for daily care as long as the items do not provide a safety concern in the jail.

V.    If gender identity cannot be determined, members shall notify their immediate supervisor. The supervisor shall evaluate the documents and other evidence available and, if practical, speak with the arrestee to determine the course of action to take with regard to housing.

41.6.8 Strip Searches of Transgender Prisoners

Strip searches of a transgender inmate’s person will be in compliance with General Order 76.1 and be conducted by one officer of the gender requested by the inmate.

I.    If the inmate does not specify a preference, the search will be conducted by an officer of the same gender as the inmate’s gender presentation.

II.    If gender presentation or identity is not clear, staff will determine the gender of the searching officer based on available evidence such as legal identification, personal property at booking, information gathered during the intake process and pat-down, criminal history, and local record system entries.

41.6.9 Juvenile Transgender Arrestees

Juveniles shall be accorded all relevant considerations related to gender identity or expression contained within this policy. (See Olympia Police Department General Order 44.1 for further information about juvenile arrestees)

41.6.10 Medical Treatment of Transgender Arrestees

I.    Transgender individuals shall receive the same standards of care as other individuals based on medical need, including needs related to gender transition. Medical needs related to gender transition will be treated with the same urgency as other medical needs.

II.    The circumstances of medical treatment related to gender transition shall be fully documented upon intake, along with all other medical conditions

41.6.11 Records of Transgender Individuals

I.    Staff will ensure the gender identity of a transgender individual in the records system matches the name and gender associated with legal documentation (e.g., birth certificate, driver’s license, passport, court order, or government-issued non-driver’s identification card).

Staff will document a gender identity or expression that is different with legal identification of arrestees in arrest paperwork and associated reports.

II.    Department members shall refer transgender individuals who request an update to their records information to Olympia Police Department Records Division.

A.    The Records Supervisor shall ensure requested changes are processed within 30 calendar days and the requestor is notified of the outcome in writing. The notification will either confirm that the requested change has been made or will provide the reason request was denied.

B.    The Records Supervisor shall ensure for all approved change requests:

1.    A new name record reflecting the individual’s new legal name and/or gender is created in the records management system.

2.    The requestor’s former name and associated involvements are attached as an alias.

3.    Documentation concerning the records change is maintained in accordance with the Department’s records retention schedule.