The Michigan Department of Corrections has implemented a new policy aimed at preventing discrimination against prisoners who identify as gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender.
The change is included in an updated version of Michigan’s “Humane Treatment and Living Conditions for Prisoners” policy directive. It reads:
“All prisoners committed to the jurisdiction of the Department shall be treated humanely and with dignity in matters of health care, personal safety and general living conditions. They also shall not be discriminated against based on race, religion, ethnic background, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, or disability.”
Michigan Equality praised the decision, stating:
“Our hope is that those involved with legislative and policy decisions in our Michigan schools, businesses, townships and cities will also decide to add these enumerated protections to their policies, ordinances, and laws. We are especially pleased to see the much-needed addition of – sexual orientation and gender identity – as a group of people in need of – and now provided – protection. It is ironic that prisoners in Michigan are now to be treated more humanely than the citizens of our state. Our mission – and hope – is to bring that same protection to the rest of Michigan.”