Women Prisoners (Support and Services)

Part of the debate – in the Scottish Parliament on 20th June 2019.

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Photo of Elaine Smith Elaine Smith Labour

I thank the cabinet secretary for his informative answer. However, at the moment, changes to public policy on gender recognition are taking place without there having been a change in the law. Those changes are unregulated and unscrutinised, and they specifically affect women in prison who are especially vulnerable. Is the cabinet secretary aware that the SPS implemented its policy on gender identity with an equality impact assessment that neither considered the effect on women prisoners nor consulted them? Does he agree that that process was deeply flawed? Will he ensure that the current review, which was referenced in the report by Women and Girls Scotland, will carry out proper equality impact and risk assessments on any new policy proposals and involve a wide-ranging consultation that includes female prisoners?