Sydney: In a horrifying revelation, a transgender woman has confessed that she was subjected to rape over 2,000 times while she was in a male-only prison in Australia. Identified as Mary (not her real name), she was serving a sentence for theft in Boggo Road Prison in Brisbane.
As quoted by Australia’s news website, news.com.au, Mary was assaulted on a daily basis after being sent to the all-male Boggo Road prison in Queensland in the 1990s.
Describing her torment, Mary said that when she first reached the prison, she was asked to strip completely naked for a body check up in front of other inmates. To add to her humiliation, this revealed her transgender identity to everyone in prison.
Mary said that in such prisons victims are often forced to indulge in sexual acts under the pretext of protecting them from other attackers. But the victims only get into more trouble and pain. They are only protected and kept alive for other prisoners’ pleasure. “It was rape and yes I was flogged and bashed to the point where I knew I had to do it in order to survive, but survival was basically for other prisoners’ pleasure,” Mary was quoted as saying by the British media.
For the victims, it’s an unending ordeal of humiliation and pain. Another transgender prisoner committed suicide, she claimed.
Mary was sent to a number of facilities to complete her four-year-sentence and she was raped in all of them. Mary said it was not just sexual abuse she had to face. She was also not provided with her hormone treatment while led her to grow her facial hair again. “It was like my identity was taken away from me,” she said.
To escape everyday abuse and trauma, Mary had tried to flee from the prison three times, and was subsequently labelled a high-risk prisoner. “I wasn’t escaping for anything else, I just had to get away from the sexual assault,” she said.
After being released from the prison, Mary had nothing else but this to say to the authorities, “If a transgender person is genuine and they are living as the opposite sex, then they should be housed in a female prison, even if you’re in a wing on your own.”
“We are human beings and most of us were born this way and we want to just live our lives but are ridiculed by society because we have the guts to be who we are,” Mary said.