Transcript: Why are dangerous men still being housed in women’s prisons?

In recent years, prisons across the Western world have been allowing men who identify as women to be housed alongside female inmates, leading to sexual harassment, sexual assaults, pregnancies, and complaints from women both in prison and among the general public. These complaints have been mostly ignored by governments and those with the power to do something. That said, the policy in the UK was changed in February in response to one high profile case in particular, wherein a rapist name Adam Graham renamed himself “Isla Bryson” and claimed to be a woman in order to be reassigned to a women’s prison in Scotland. The new policy prevents men who “retain male genitalia or have been convicted of a violent or sexual offence” from being moved to women’s prisons.

The US and Canada, though, continue to lag on addressing this issue, and dangerous men remain in women’s prisons across North America.

I spoke with two women who are taking action: Amanda Stulman is the USA director of Keep Prisons Single Sex, and Jennifer Thomas is the founder of Free Speech for Women and runs an action group called “Get Men Out.”

You can listen to this interview on the podcast. This transcript has been edited lightly for clarity.


Meghan: I would love if you could tell our listeners a little bit about the work that you do and how you came to be involved in this issue.

Amanda: Thanks for having us. I became involved in this issue in particular because I have a background in administrative law and policy, and because the issue of prisons is so distinct in so many different jurisdictions. On top of the 50 states, there’s the federal system and there are over 2000 separate municipal jails.. County… city… Each one can have its own, unique policy or law which applies to it. So I thought I could be useful in breaking down what those policies look like and how they end up applying in the real world.

So I worked with Kate Coleman, who is the founder of Keep Prisons Single Sex. She’s based in the UK and we opened a branch of Keep  Prisons Single Sex in the US over two years ago. The goal of Keep Prisons Single Sex is obviously to advocate against mixed sex prisons, and we do that by obtaining data, gathering research, lobbying lawmakers and policymakers, and trying to bring public awareness to the issue.

Meghan: Great. I’m so glad that you’re doing this work. This issue of of men being transferred into women’s prisons is so troubling, and I’ve been extremely frustrated, as I’m sure you both have as well, over the past few years that Governments in North America are really not paying attention to this and really not addressing women’s concerns.

Jennifer, can you tell us a little bit about your work and background and the activism that you are doing?

Jennifer: Well, I’m, I’m sort of an action group. So I focus on all the issues with that affect women, girls, and gender. I love working with Amanda because she’s so knowledgeable with the policies. And this last protest, Get Men Out, that was an action group I started. The first thing I wanted to do was aim at the prison situation because that is so abhorrent, you know, and it’s so obvious that it’s wrong. But I also diirect that towards the bathroom issue and other issues too — Get Men Out, Save Our Spaces… It sort of covers everything. What I like to do is read the temperature of what’s going on and try to anticipate where I will get the most exposure.

So that’s what I do. I don’t solely focus on the prison issue, but as with everything in this issue of the harms of gender ideology, you focus on one and the prison issue will lead you to the ACLU because they’re the ones that  sued for that policy to get in there. So I’ll start there and dig deeper just to try to see where I can get more action and more attention focused on that issue. I’ve worked with Amanda a few times, I’ve worked with Beth Steltzer from Save Women Sports, I’ve worked with a Partners for Ethical Care…

When they have an action that I think will really hit the temperature, of where I think America’s at,  then I go full force. So that’s what happened with this Get Men Out action. We worked with Amanda and Amy Ichikawa and we had a sense that the population was starting to be willing to see this. This issue is such a violation — we’re talking about women in prison, we’re talking about really some of the most vulnerable women in the country.

Meghan: Same thing in Canada. I interviewed Heather Mason a while back, who’s a really brave advocate and an ex inmate herself. She’s been one of the only ones speaking out in Canada about this issue. We’re talking about women who already have almost no rights, have no voice because they’re in prison, and they’re being housed with not just men, but the worst men — violent offenders, rapists, child molesters, and so on.

Jennifer, you mentioned that the ACLU was heavily involved  in pushing for this policy allowing men to be transferred into women’s prisons. Amanda, maybe you can speak to that a little bit — how did that happen?

Amanda: Sure. On top of the usual ire one should feel for the ACLU and their complete betrayal of what their mission is supposed to be and what they’re supposed to stand for, I have some extra ire for it. I, as a young adult in the early 90s, I interned at the ACLU in the exact same program that is now their LGBTQ++AI when it was the Lesbian and Gay Rights and HIV project. And to see them stray so far afield, not just from the substance of this issue in particular in terms of protecting women, but even on some of the ancillary issues. For example, they were the main drivers behind preventing a woman from requesting public records in Washington State. She was trying to learn how many men were in women’s prisons, how recently they’d been moved… People were starting to get wind of the policy change in Washington several years ago, and it was the A C L U who worked with several inmates representing them to fight the disclosure by Washington State Department of Corrections for a public records request.

The enormous irony of this is that this woman learned how to make her public records request from the ACLU’s own website. The ACLU’s  mission is transparency, public awareness, obtaining data from the government, you know, the government works for you, etc. And they actively worked to suppress access to data that would allow the public to learn the impact of these policies, and they were so successful.

That they managed to work with the Washington State legislature and actually passed a law modifying their public records  law to exclude disclosure of issues related to gender identity and prisoners. So unless you get information directly from women housed there, which you know, is incredibly dangerous and risky for them, there’s no way to do it on paper, publicly, directly because of the ACLU.

But getting back to the primary issue of pushing for this policy, the New York Civil Liberties Union, which is kinda a local version of the ACLU, I believe it originated with them. I haven’t been able to track it back any further, but they’re the ones who have developed the model transgender inmate policy that was enacted in California, that legislatures tried to enact in Maryland. They’re actively trying to enact a version of it in New York state right now, which is even more extreme than the version in California. So, they’re not only rhetorically pushing this issue, they are actively developing model laws. They’re actively pushing for those laws and actively working to prevent the public from learning about this issue.

Meghan: This is so appalling. I mean, for these kinds of organizations to be fighting against the rights of incredibly marginalized people. It’s really mindblowing that this is happening.

Jennifer: They’re acting as a legal agent of the gender industry. We have to expose and fight the ACLU because they are basically a legal firm that is pushing their policy.

It’s not just as simple as just saying, ok only men and women’s prisons. You have to dig deeper. I’m planning a protest in August against the ACLU in Washington DC because, you know, we can at least go after their donors — all the people that think the ACLU is so great because they protected the Nazis and Skokie and they believe in free speech and all that.

The whole narrative behind them that they’ve managed to hide—the new narrative—is still believed by a lot of Democrats. And I think if the Democrats knew what the ACLU have been doing with our civil liberties, they would stop donating.

Would that stop the ACLU? No, because the gender industry would just make up for that money. But you could see then a shift with the populace, you know, a shift of awareness.

Meghan: I’m glad that you brought that up, in terms of the donors, because one of the major obstacles to fighting gender identity ideology is that it’s infiltrated almost every single institution. Certainly every single civil rights organization, reproductive rights organization, LG now BTQ etc organizations. I mean, the reason that they’re doing this is because they’re getting all this funding to do it. Alternatively, you could look at it as they risk losing funding if they don’t push this.

Let’s talk about that. Where do we go to advocate against these policies when we’re dealing with these massive organizations and institutions? And clearly this ideology has infiltrated the Democratic Party. It feels so big and I know that people are getting really angry about it thanks to activism, like what you two are doing, but it feels like a big hill to climb. Have you had any successes? Or do you have suggestions in terms of who might be a productive target?

Amanda: I have found that to be among the most depressing part of working in this area, which is that there is not a single legacy civil rights organization or women’s rights group that understands this issue, or at least, pretends to. Every single one of them has been absolutely ideologically captured. So it really does seem as though either these organizations have to be built anew from the ground up — some other version of them. Or it’s going to take what Jennifer does an enormous amount of, which is on the street campaigning to bring awareness to force media to pay attention to the issue and to bring it to the public. We don’t have the numbers in North America of people advocating on this issue. We certainly don’t have the dollars. The reason that the ACLU changed the name of the program that addresses this is because they received a $15 million gift from John Stryker. That is what led to the change of the name and to their absolute commitment to the “T” all the time and none of the LGB. So I don’t think there’s a good answer to how we deal with the established organizations. I think people and especially women like Jennifer are the ones sort of creating a public groundswell.

Meghan: Right. I mean I’m, I’m verging towards thinking all these organizations need to be defunded and taken apart and started over again so that they’re not so tied up with this money that’s corrupted them so deeply.

Jennifer: The only real solution is the public against this, right? When we see thousands of people in the streets, fighting against this, that’s when we’ll see some change. People have to get mad enough to get out on the streets and this complacency that they’re under.

But inevitably I do think we will see a ground swell and that’s when we’ll regain our power. We won’t feel so helpless because we’ll look around and instead of seeing 20 or 30 people standing next to us, it’s thousands.

That’s how we know about Martin Luther King — because he went to the street. So it’s going to take that and it’s going to take an awareness level where we just have to keep plugging along and hitting these stories.

Now there’s this new media that is hungry for these stories. Tucker just got fired. James O’Keefe got fired. They’re looking for stories, right? Because they’re going to build their own thing. So we do have this interesting time right now where there’s new media that we can tap into that will tell our story. It’s getting out more and more, but it’s going to take work.

Meghan: So I wanna talk a bit about the law. I know that Joe Biden’s administration pushed through a policy allowing men to be transferred into women’s prisons. But I also am under the impression that things differ from state to state.

I know that New York lawmakers are pushing or trying to push through this bill called the Gender Identity Respect, Dignity and Safety Act, which would automatically place male prisoners in women’s facilities if they identify as women. I’m curious to know, first, if you know what’s happening with this bill, and second, if this is something that we actually need to be fighting on a state to state basis or that we can fight on a federal level.

Amanda: So the New York State Bill, as you say, presumptively houses people according to their self-declared gender identity. And there is such an insanely high burden and such a quick turnaround time required to deny that to someone that the bill was clearly drafted in New York with the intent to never, ever, ever deny someone. There are also mechanisms built in for the state to be sued if someone is denied, and to have attorney’s fees and damages paid. So it is so unidirectional a law, it’s a little frightening that that came about after all we’ve heard coming out of California and New Jersey and Canada, to the extent that people hear about it, um, the, the answer more broadly is yes, for right now, this is having to be fought on a state by state basis.

When this administration — the Biden administration — came in on its first day in office, it issued an executive order directing federal agencies to interpret the laws and regulations that they have some control over and that they manage in the various agencies to interpret sex to include gender identity. So with one pen stroke on his first day in office, he directed every federal agency to work through that process for the Bureau of Prisons, which is the only direct mechanism the federal government has. There are some indirect ones, which I’ll mention, but it’s the only direct prison system that the federal government controls, putting aside military.

During the Obama administration’s last month in office, they created a transgender offender manual and literally chucked it in the air and walked out the door and left that for the Trump administration to deal with. It was a very aggressive policy. Again, not a federal law, not a regulation, didn’t go through any voting process, didn’t go through any public comment process.

It was merely an in-house manual that the Federal Bureau of Prisons was expected to follow. It took the Trump administration two years to grapple with that policy and try to modify it, which they did, in kind of half-hearted way.

And then following Biden’s executive order and a few other similar executive orders, the Federal Bureau of Prisons again reissued the transgender offender manual and again leaning much more heavily towards a pathway for men to be moved into the women’s prisons based on self declaration. So that’s what covers the federal prison.

The way that the federal government impacts the state prison system is they have money and there’s a federal regulation called the PREA regulations, and it derives from the Prison Rape Elimination Act. The PREA regulations provide — and those did go through a public comment period, but that was so long before this issue was in the public’s line of vision.. You know, it was over a decade ago, nobody was paying attention to this… Well, some rare people were paying attention, but very few people were paying attention… And through the regulatory process, the Obama Department of Justice issued regulations that contemplated cross-sex housing. The act itself did not. And that’s the first time in the federal legal system there was anything speaking to even the concept of developing cross-sex housing. So what those regulations provide is that in order to maintain full federal funding — and every state receives some in order to maintain that —  you get massively dinged until you receive no money. Year after year, you get successively more dinged if you do not adhere to those regulations. So every state has to, at least on paper, consider housing people based on their self-declared trans identity. So for a number of years, most states were like, “okay.” And then went about their business. But some of them took it really seriously.

So now a number of states have either laws or policies that not only implement those regulations of contemplating cross-sex housing, but presumptively housed according to self-declared gender identity.

Jennifer: And this is how the federal government influences states throughout, like the federal government has the right — the president can come in and put out an executive order.

That’s what he did. This crazy executive order that virtually anybody would think was insane, you know, prioritizing gender identity above sex-based rights. They can come in and do that, and then they have this mechanism. The schools are funded federally, so they basically blackmail them into adopting these policies by withholding money.

So you think, well, why would the states go along with this? Well, they wouldn’t get their money. They even threatened the school lunch program at one point with, you know, “if you don’t adopt these policies, your school lunch program is going to be threatened.”

It’s a withholding of money if you don’t do this right. So like the universities that are, there are some laws in there, but they’re just not pursuing them. These executive orders have a lot of control even with Title IX. Amanda could probably speak better to this, but that’s why it’s being messed with, because it’s not, it’s not a law per se?

Amanda: Right. Just to clarify, Title IX is itself a law, but it’s the regulations that they’re kind of messing with right now. And what they’re trying to do is trying to apply what both Jennifer and I have been talking about in terms of the executive orders — redefining sex to mean sex or gender identity. The reason we’ve heard a lot about Title IX is they are going through the formal rulemaking process and putting it out for public comment. They received a record number of comments, which is really heartening, about modifying the language of the regulations, which is where you’ll find all the meaty stuff about what you have to do to get money if you’re a state or a state entity.

Meghan: I want to talk about some specific cases. I believe that there are 27 males currently being housed at Edna Mahan Correctional Facility for women? Which was a central focus of the Get Men Out protest in New Jersey last month. Is that normal throughout the states?

Amanda: Well, woohoo, now there’s only about 10. A number of them managed to behave so poorly they got themselves moved out.

About two years ago, we worked with Women’s Declaration International to do a statewide FOIA project of every state prison to try to see what the numbers were in each location. Many were extremely uncooperative and we were not able to get a completely exhaustive list. But there are states that are in that range… admittedly not many two years ago. I think there’s probably more now, if we were to circle back and do it again. But even in states where you wouldn’t necessarily think of it, there’s a handful.

Virginia had one for decades, even before this recent push. But a number of states have several dozen. Obviously California does now. Washington State is getting up there. Illinois’ numbers are growing and they have neither a policy nor a law. A federal judge keeps putting men in women’s prison in Illinois. So it’s everywhere, though the numbers change. But we’re, we’re only seeing them go up. We’re not seeing them go down much. New Jersey went down just because they had a kind of freak out placement of men in there when they reached the settlement with the ACLU that Jennifer referenced, and then they had another panic in the other direction when it went so badly.

Meghan: And what are some of the cases — like what are we hearing about what’s actually going on in these prisons? I know that when I talk about this issue online, people will respond in these very blase ways. People will say like, “Well, you know, women get raped in prison either way.” Or they say, “If they’re in male prisons, then these males who identify as women are going to get raped.” Or they say, “Well prison is really bad.” And I don’t know, maybe they’re just not able to picture the situation and what’s actually going down and what the danger is when you’re putting men in women’s prisons. Can you talk to some specific cases that have happened?

Jennifer: So when a woman gets convicted of a crime and the judge reads out her sentence, he doesn’t say, “Okay, your sentence is possible rape, possible forced childbirth or an abortion, and then possible abandonment of your child.”

We don’t agree. We don’t have agreed upon laws to cover this. The public is not in agreement on this. Otherwise, that would be the sentence. This apathy around it just upsets me to no end. I also think people think it can’t happen to them.

The fastest growing category of inmates is women. When women get convicted, it’s harsher sentences for lesser crimes.

I think this sort of bleeds into that industrial complex. Like in New Jersey they were making $61,000 per person off of their prisoners. And women are easier to manage than men. Actually, prison reform is working for men and not women. So men are getting shorter sentences for worse crimes and getting out. They can add more to that prison population by adding men. Right now, if Bundy applied, he would get into a woman’s prisons. If Richard Speck, who killed eight nurses in Chicago, took hormones and dressed like a woman when he was in jail he would be in there with them. There’s no distinction of how bad the crime is.

Amanda: I think those are really good points, and I think a lot of it speaks to, aside from the sort of disregard for prisoners in general, it’s just treated as a kind of a throwaway population. But aside from that, I think it is largely a misconception. This is a subset of, at best, men they’re imagining are a particular kind of man or worse, they think there’s some sort of version of a subset of women. But I think most people imagine that it’s non-violent criminals, that it’s men who have had genital surgery, that it’s men who are on hormones, that it’s men who are tiny and pretty and vulnerable. All of those assumptions are out there and obviously, even if somebody is those things and not a violent criminal who is tiny and has had genital surgery and is on hormones, if they’re a man, they still don’t belong in a woman’s prison.

But I think that is what most of the public imagines when they hear these stories, which is one reason that it’s so important for the stories and the names and the visuals and the crimes and all of that to be made really right in people’s faces so they can see the criminal history of these men. They can see what they look like, which I know seems really superficial, That page on Keep Prisons’s Single-Sex’s website that has a sample of men and their crimes who are in women’s prisons, I mean, I’ve peaked people in 30 seconds by showing them that page. Just the, the visual of is sometimes what people need. Like, oh, still has a penis and is massive? That’s crazy.

Meghan: Yeah. And I guess, probably a lot of people — I’m gonna give them the benefit of the doubt — are imagining these men who are identifying as women or trans women as being men who “pass.” So men who “look like women,” probably men who’ve gone through all the surgeries and so on and so forth. So I imagine that what’s happening there when you’re showing them that actually these are the men who are in these women’s facilities: they just look like regular dudes. Like not even trying to look like women.

Amanda: Or they look exactly like men who have literally put their hair in pigtails, which is somehow even more alarming. You know, the superficiality of it.

Jennifer: The women said in their letters at the protest that these men dropped that act right when get into the facility then it’s a million dollar baby game, you know, let’s make a baby.

They’re not acting vulnerable when that’s going on. It’s a complete facade.

Meghan: In the UK they’ve actually had some success and have started to change their policies in order to bar violent offenders, as I understand it, from being transferred to women’s prisons. Do I have that right?

Amanda: I believe that’s right. There’s a certain category where the answer is just “no.”

Meghan: Have you had any success in that regard? In terms of advocating for change in the US or have you managed to have an impact when you talk to politicians, for example?

Amanda: Aside from public awareness, which is kind of hard to measure, but in terms of objective successes, a number of organizations and women, including Keep Prisons Single Sex and me, fought very hard in Maryland to keep a proposed law there from getting out of committee, and that was successful.

A year or two ago, New York State’s law sat in committee the last legislative session, um, through a letter writing campaign from Keep Prisons Single Sex, and I like to think we had something to do with it not making it out of committee. No successes in terms of turning things around necessarily, but like putting a hand up to the train that just keeps going faster.

But the public awareness is huge. That some mainstream media in the New York Post did a story about Jennifer’s action  last month…  They’re covering it, as Jennifer mentioned, and alternative media is becoming more interested in it. So in terms of public awareness, I think that’s where we’re seeing success.

I can’t say so much elsewhere.

Jennifer: Yeah. And public awareness is a tricky thing because you have to get ’em mad enough to come out. I think there’s a sense of helplessness that can be overcome with just more people on the ground and you know, the more people rally and organize and get together because we have to rebuild almost all our organizations. So we’re going to be needing to mesh with new people, churches that have retained their organization  and can relay messages without the dictatorship of social media and tech… We’re going have to come up with alternatives, and alternative ways of networking, and different people to network with to really get the ball rolling. Because it’s too scary alone. I think a lot of people are aware, and we’re at the stage of how do we get them to join us? How do we get them to come and let us ease some of that helplessness they’re feeling about this by joining together. And then lawyers mix in, and then we’re cooking with gas, you know, and we can make change.

We’re behind England. We have different laws here. It’s a totally different landscape here. But I do feel like it’s changed over the past couple of years in America. And there are more people interested in fighting this. So we are at the stage of just kind of weaving that blanket together.

We’re going to get better at this. I have hope for the future.

Meghan: I’m glad to hear that. I think that unfortunately, we — and I’m speaking like for myself, I’m not speaking for you two because I don’t know how long you guys have all been involved in this work — but we, a lot of the radical feminists who were worried about this early on, really didn’t understand how big this was and how deep the issue goes, so probably naively thought, “If we can just get the word out, then we can stop it,” not realizing that this was coming top down from these very wealthy funders. Just letting people know about it may have not been enough. Although, of course, the more people that know, the more people will push back, especially at a government level, and hopefully we can have an impact on things like legislation that way.

Amanda: You had asked about politicians, and I think there’s something relevant on that issue, particularly to contrast how it’s gone in the US and Canada vs the UK and that is that our politicians, you know, the Democratic party — liberal politicians, or I should say lefty politicians — are absolutely committed to holding onto the belief that the only people who could object to these policies are religious conservatives.

You know, I write as a constituent to my own representatives, and I’m in New York, so they’re all Democrats. And every time I do, I get back a form letter that says, “We’re excited to learn about your interest in religious freedom, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. You must be concerned about this for religious reasons.” And I write back and I say, that is not my concern. My concern is this. And I get another form letter that’s their like letter two in this letter tree, saying, you know, “Thank you for demonstrating your interest in religious freedom. We’re concerned about that too.”

So some of what’s happened and some of the challenge in the US and perhaps to some extent in Canada too, probably to a slightly lesser degree, is there is this artificial reinforced divide about who’s for these policies and who’s against them and why.

It becomes additionally challenging when much of the media who will cover this is either conservative or religious or both, and bless them. I am so thankful that they do. But all of us who need to be interested and concerned about this issue are just allergic to the arguments because they come out of the gate thinking this is tribal and we’re not in that tribe, so we’re not joining hands with you.

Meghan: Yeah. I mean that’s been the media and the political view from the get-go, which is why it was so difficult for feminists to get their perspectives out in the first place.

In Canada the media would only cover this issue as one of the religious right — which is strange because the religious right in Canada is really pretty marginal — as though it was only a debate between the religious right and everybody else.

Clearly they’ve done the same thing to a larger extent in the US which is frustrating because as you say people kind of just shut down and think, “Well, I guess you must be a religious right, Christian, gay hating jerk.”

Jennifer: And throw abortion on top of that, which they have done, and it’s just division everywhere. But there is this new media and there are so many people who are politically homeless who just want good schools for their kids and don’t want them brainwashed. So I think people are converging on almost every issue in gender. We’re all starting to kind of sing the same message. We want to work together, we can set aside whatever differences we have. This is too important. So I think there’s hope. There’s always hope, right?

We’re basically fighting the one percent. And if everyone could come in on even the free speech issue where, you know, if we don’t have it, we are literally slaves — then they can tell us to say anything and do anything..

Even with Covid, it galvanized people. But we’re fighting a big machine. Like even with Tucker, you know, he was the top — the top host of the top show in America, and they showed us he can be taken off the throne. They want to model behavior of defeat with us. And we have to fight that with modeling behavior of not using pronouns and demanding our autonomy. Individually and then together. And I think we are getting there and more and more people are getting pissed about this.

I have sisters and a lot of them were against me. But after Tucker, a couple of them came around, so the temperature has changed. My sisters are full on Democrats raised in Chicago, but they’re coming around because they’re seeing it affect them. And you know, that’s how it goes with issues. It has to affect you. Your kid has to be in peril. So I think we are going to see game momentum and then it’ll kind of rub off on Canada because we’re so close.

That’s what I’m hoping for. I’m so sorry. That’s all I have to say about Canada.

Meghan: I mean, it’s really, really bad. It’s a really bad situation in Canada and nothing’s really changing and there’s a little bit of pushback here and there, but not nearly enough and nothing comparable to what’s going on in the US, but you’re right that Canada does follow America’s lead, so, I think you might be right on that end.

And I’m glad that you made the point about we’re fighting the one percent because this trans rights movement has done so much work very successfully to present itself as just another grassroots civil rights movement. Like this is just about these marginalized people who don’t have rights, fighting for their lives, fighting back for their rights, fighting back for them, their safety. And that is not how any of this happened. This was fully a top down thing. And those of us fighting back are the ones who have very, very, very little power.

Jennifer: They always say, You don’t want us to exist.” And then they erase the word women. Bizarre. You know, when this mass propaganda machine captured all the young people online, basically they internalized this dialogue with everything they’re doing to us.

That’s why there’s no dialogue with them. I think what they don’t want people to hear is how ridiculous their answers are.

Meghan: Of course. It’s always a reversal. It’s always about the trans activists presenting themselves as these downtrodden, silencenced, everyone’s after them, they’re being threatened and harassed all the time, etc. And we know as women who are trying to speak out on this that it’s the total opposite. And I mean, I think anyone who’s really paying attention to this debate can see what happens  to women in particular who speak out and who really has the power in all of this institutionally. And in a lot of cases literally the physical power as well as we’re talking about men.

Before I let you go can you please tell me how to find your work, your organizations, and how to support your work, as well as if you have any upcoming actions that people might be able to support or attend?

Amanda: Sure. So the USA website for Keep Prisons Single Sex is Other than that, we’re most active on Twitter, which is @NoXY_USA. We’re also on Facebook.

Meghan: Awesome. And can people support your work in any way?

Amanda: Yes. Thank you for asking about that. We do have a donate button on our website and just so people are aware, everything gets funded through the UK. So if it is in pounds, don’t be surprised. The UK group will honour requests to direct that towards the USA efforts. That’s what funds all of our work. Everyone is a volunteer. Any expenses we have get paid through fundraisers to the UK Keep Prisons Single Sex.

Jennifer: I’m Jennifer Thomas Rev @RevFemStBeatfem. I run the action group, Get Men Out.

My next event is on June 16th in Pittsburgh at the City Council building at 1PM. I’m aiming to get men out of women’s bathrooms. And of course it’s a Free Speech for Women event, so we’ll invite speakers. The following protest I have on the calendar is for the ACLU and that is Friday, August 11th in Washington, DC on the Supreme Court steps. You can email me at [email protected] for more info and I’ll get back to you. I do fundraising, but I peg it to each protest. So the fundraiser won’t come out for the Pittsburgh event until about a month before. So if you just follow me on Twitter, that’s the best way to find me. Or email me.

Meghan: Okay, perfect. Thank you both so much for speaking with me about this.

I’m really excited about the work that you’re doing, and I’m glad that you both feel hopeful about affecting change and I’m really grateful for your willingness to fight and for all the hard work that you’re doing.

Jennifer: Oh, well thank you Meghan. It’s such a pleasure and you are a woman that I admire, and I thank you so much for the interview.

Amanda: Same. Thank you.

Meghan Murphy

Founder & Editor

Meghan Murphy is a freelance writer and journalist from Vancouver, BC. She has been podcasting and writing about feminism since 2010 and has published work in numerous national and international publications, including The Spectator, UnHerd, Quillette, the CBC, New Statesman, Vice, Al Jazeera, The Globe and Mail, and more. Meghan completed a Masters degree in the department of Gender, Sexuality and Women’s Studies at Simon Fraser University in 2012 and is now exiled in Mexico with her very photogenic dog.