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

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

Just Posted

Four members with Divers for Cleaner Lakes and Oceans were out at Cultus Lake on March 28 and 29 hauling trash out of the waters. (Henry Wang)
PHOTOS: Out-of-town divers remove 100s of pounds of trash from Cultus Lake

Members of Divers for Cleaner Lakes and Oceans hauled out 470 pounds of trash over two days

Photo courtesy of Abbotsford Police Department.
‘Vehicle Maintenance 101 for Teens’ to be hosted by Abbotsford Police traffic officers

Virtual meetups with Q&A period held on April 23, May 11, May 25

Stock photo from Unsplash.com
Free online workshops on ‘advance care planning’ hosted in Abbotsford

3 sessions hosted by Abbotsford Hospice Society and Association for Healthy Aging

People stroll through rows of tulips in bloom during the Tulips of the Valley Festival on May 2, 2017. The colourful spring event, now called Chilliwack Tulips, opens on Sunday, April 11, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Chilliwack tulip attraction open this weekend after being closed last year due to COVID-19

More than 6.5 million bulbs in all at this year’s colourful Chilliwack Tulips event

The new American Eagle location at Highstreet Shopping Centre is set to open up this summer. (John Morrow/Abbotsford News)
Abbotsford American Eagle store opening at Highstreet Shopping Centre

Sevenoaks Shopping Centre location closing on April 18, new store opening in summer

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

Emergency crews on scene after a small plane crashed in a grassy area on the northeast side of Boundary Bay Airport Saturday morning (April 10). A freelancer said the plane caught fire and one person was transported to hospital by BC Emergency Health Services. (Photo: Shane MacKichan)
1 taken to hospital after plane crash at Metro Vancouver airport

Plane appears to have suffered ‘significant’ damage, says freelancer

A vehicle that was driven through the wall of a parkade at Uptown Shopping Centre and into the nearby Walmart on April 9 was removed through another hole in the wall later that night. (Photo via Saanich Police Department and Ayush Kakkar)
Vehicle launched into B.C. Walmart removed following rescue of trapped workers

Crews cut new hole in parkade wall to remove vehicle safely

As of Saturday, April 10, people born in 1961 are the latest to be eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine. (Black Press files)
B.C. residents age 60+ can now register to get their COVID-19 vaccine

Vaccine registration is now open to people born in 1961 or earlier

A new saline gargle test, made in B.C., will soon be replacing COVID-19 nasal swab tests for kids. (PHSA screenshot)
Take-home COVID-19 tests available for some B.C. students who fall ill at school

BC Children’s Hospital plans to provide 1,200 kits to Vancouver district schools this April

Ruming Jiang and his dog Chiu Chiu are doing fine following a brush with hypothermia that saw several people work together to get them out of the Fraser River near Langley’s Derby Reach Park on March 25, 2021 (Special to the Advance Times)
Man finds men who rescued him from drowning in B.C.’s Fraser River

A grateful Ruming Jiang says he will thank them again, this time in person when the pandemic ends

The 10-part Netflix series Maid, which is being exclusively shot in Greater Victoria, was filming near Prospect Lake in Saanich last month. (Photo courtesy Fred Haynes)
Province announces $150,000 towards film studio, fulfilling B.C. NDP promise

Investment to fund movie studio feasibility study at Camosun College

Tyson Ginter, 7, is proud of his latest Hot Wheels he recently received by Quesnel RCMP Const. Matt Joyce. (Photo submitted)
B.C. Mountie handing out toy cars to light up children’s faces

‘A lot of times it will be the only interaction they have with the police,’ says Const. Matt Joyce

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

Most Read