Surrey Pretrial in Newton. (Photo: Tom Zytaruk)

Surrey Pretrial in Newton. (Photo: Tom Zytaruk)

B.C. transgender inmate to get human rights hearing after being held in mostly male jail

B.C. Human Rights Tribunal member Amber Prince on March 3 dismissed the pretrial’s application to have Makayla Sandve’s complaint dismissed

A transgender inmate who lodged a human rights complaint against Surrey Pretrial, alleging discrimination based on gender identity, gender expression and sex will have a hearing before the British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal.

Tribunal member Amber Prince on March 3 dismissed the pretrial’s application to have Makayla Sandve’s complaint dismissed.

“I am not offering an opinion on the likelihood of Ms. Sandve successfully proving her case at a hearing,” Prince said in her reasons for decision. “All I am saying at this stage is that a hearing is warranted.”

Sandve was incarcerated at Surrey Pretrial, predominantly occupied by men, from Oct. 24, 2017 to Jan. 22, 2018 and, while separated from the other inmates, requested to be transferred to a women’s jail but was denied. Sandve alleges being frisked by male staff, being “misgendered” by them, being the brunt of derogatory remarks and not being provided with green institutional clothing worn by women but rather the red clothing worn by men.

Corrections denied discrimination and applied to have the complaint dismissed on grounds it had no reasonable prospect of success, but Prince disagreed.

“In this decision, it is not my role to decide whether BC Corrections discriminated against Ms. Sandve or not, and I make no findings of fact in that regard. My task in this decision is to decide whether Ms. Sandve’s complaint against BC Corrections has no reasonable prospect of succeeding at a hearing,” Prince said.

READ ALSO: Transgender inmate loses court case against Surrey Pretrial

READ ALSO: Transgender inmate makes human rights complaint against Surrey Pretrial

READ ALSO: A look at Surrey Pretrial’s storied history

Prince noted in her reasons that Sandve “says she requested section status because she did not feel safe in a jail full of men. While separately confined, she says male inmates slipped offensive and derogatory notes and drawings under her door, and asked her for sexual favours.

“I am not persuaded that Ms. Sandve has no reasonable prospect of proving that her sex and gender identity or expression were factors in the adverse impacts she experienced at Surrey Pretrial,” Prince decided.

A date for a hearing has yet to be determined.



tom.zytaruk@surreynowleader.com

Like us on Facebook Follow us on Instagram and follow Tom on Twitter

CorrectionSurrey

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

B.C's COVID-19 dashboard shows the peaks and valleys of cases prior to the record daily report of 132 on April 9, 2021. (Dashboard image)
Interior Health has record day of COVID-19 cases

132 cases reported Friday, April 9, more deaths in Vernon hospital outbreak

Kaslo mushroom farmer given green light for unique project

Robin Mercy will plant mushrooms in the Kaslo Community Forest

The Kootenay Lake ferry terminals will receive a number of upgrades this year. File photo
Kootenay Lake ferry terminals to receive upgrades

The transportation ministry announced the $5.5-million project Thursday

Red dresses hang in the trees outside Nelson City Hall to remind us about missing and murdered Indigenous women. The REDress Project, created by the Winnipeg Métis artist Jaime Black, also exists as an exhibit in the Touchstones gallery, running until May 29. Photo: Bill Metcalfe
Vogue highlights red dress installation in Nelson

The project by artist Jamie Black was featured in the fashion magazine

Castlegar byelection candidates participated in an online forum April 7. L-R, top: Heather Fancy, moderator Suzanne Lehbauer, Gord Lamont, Gordon Zaitsoff. Middle: Florio Vassilakakis, Brian Bogle, Lawrence Chernoff, Kirk Duff. Bottom: Sandy Bojechko, Shirley Falstead
VIDEO: Castlegar candidates share views at forum

Byelection forum hosted by Castlegar Chamber of Commerce

B.C. Health Minister Adrian Dix and Premier John Horgan describe vaccine rollout at the legislature, March 29, 2021. (B.C. government)
1,262 more COVID-19 infections in B.C. Friday, 9,574 active cases

Province’s mass vaccination reaches one million people

University of Victoria rowing coach Barney Williams at the University of Victoria in Victoria, B.C. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
UVic, women’s rowing coach deny former athlete’s allegation of verbal abuse

Lily Copeland alleges coach Barney Williams would stand close to her and speak aggressively in the sauna

Buckingham Palace officials say Prince Philip, the husband of Queen Elizabeth II, has died. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP/Alastair Grant
Flags drop, bells toll as Canadians remember special relationship with Prince Philip

‘He was often portrayed as a brisk or brusque, rough character… but it’s that other side of him, the caring individual who spent time with people and asked questions and showed compassion’

Librarian Katie Burns with the Fraser Valley Regional Libraries poses for a photo in Chilliwack on June 18, 2019. Monday, April 12, 2021 is Library Workers’ Day. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of April 11 to 17

Library Workers Day, That Sucks! Day, and Wear Your Pyjamas to Work Day are all coming up this week

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

A large illuminated heart was installed on the roof of the Vernon Jubilee Hospital May 1, 2020. (VJH Foundation photo)
Three deaths linked to COVID-19 outbreak in Vernon hospital

Interior Health reports two additional deaths at VJH

Robinson Russ, 37, was fatally stabbed on April 4, according to a statement from police. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Vancouver police name victim following city’s fourth homicide of 2021

Robinson Russ, 37, was fatally stabbed Sunday in the Downtown Eastside

A man wears a face mask past the emergency department of the Vancouver General Hospital. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward)
Calls for stricter action in B.C. as COVID-19 variants projected to climb

Jens von Bergmann says the province has taken a ‘wait and see’ approach when early action is needed

Most Read