Justice Department Paying $1.5 Million to Develop Transgender-Specific Program in Federal Prisons

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The Department of Justice is paying $1.5 million to implement a “transgender programming curriculum” across all federal prisons.

The curriculum, which is still in the works with details to be finalized by Sept. 30, will teach “techniques to seek support for mental health concerns and skills to advocate for physical, emotional, and sexual health and safety,” the office of public affairs for the department’s Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) told The Epoch Times in a statement.

Overseeing the program’s development is The Change Companies, a private-owned entity in Carson City, Nevada. Since 2008, it has received $3.4 million in awards from the BOP in the states of Nevada, West Virginia, California, and Kansas. The July 2021 contract of $1.5 million for transgender-specific programming was one of the largest from the federal agency to date.

The BOP “recognizes the importance of appropriate gender-affirming management and treatment of transgender individuals in its custody,” the BOP statement read. “By entering into a contract with The Change Companies, the BOP is able to expand program offerings for transgender inmates.”

A total of 1,414—accounting for a little less than 1 percent of the 158,033 federal inmates under the BOP’s charge—currently identify as transgender, according to data provided by a BOP public affairs spokesperson.

The curriculum will involve three programs, which will include assistance to help inmates transition back into society, and a support group “addressing reentry needs and managing identity concerns,” the BOP said, adding that the programs will contain “full curricula and facilitator’s guides, the use of instructional workbooks, and videos.”

The agency stressed that it “maintains procurement integrity and compliance with laws and federal regulations when procuring contracts of goods and services.”

“The award of this contract was compliant with federal law and regulations to include fair pricing of the award,” it continued.

By Eva Fu

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