Friday, April 25, 2014

I Am At A Rally For Jane Doe

The 16 year old trans-girl that is being held at York Correctional Facility for Women in Niantic. The rally for her is being held at 505 Hudson St in Hartford at 1:00PM in front of the DCF offices.

Jane Doe wrote a passionate letter

A lot of things have been said about me recently. Some of those things were said at court and other things were said in the news. I just read the article by Commissioner Katz. People might think they know me based what they have heard but they know nothing about who I am.

I have been involved with DCF since I was a little kid. There were lots of problems in my family and DCF got involved so they could help me. Over the years I have had many DCF workers and some of them did care about me and really tried to help me. Others just did it for the paycheck. I have been in lots of different placements, some were OK but in others I was sexually abused by the workers. I admit that I have acted out and got into fights, many DCF kids fight with staff and other kids while in placement. I am not saying it was Ok to do this but I have a lot of stuff built up inside me and don’t know how to deal with it at times. They tell me that trauma changes people and makes them act out. Believe me, it does

Although my life has been harder than most anyone can imagine, the last few months have been the worst. I haven’t always agreed with everything DCF has done but I thought they were supposed to be on my side. All of that changed after what happened in MA. Forget what DCF said, I didn’t blind anyone or break their jaw. DCF has said a lot of things that aren’t true so they can make me look like a monster. Just think about how you would look if your worst enemy wrote down every bad thing you have ever done and on top of that made up some things that weren’t true.

I sat in court for six days freaking out that I was going to be sent to a men’s prison, that was really hard. The only person from DCF that was against me in court was the Superintendent of CJTS. He said that he thought I was the most dangerous person who had ever been at the Training School. He had never even met me before he asked that I go to Manson. And for the entire time I was at CJTS I was perfectly behaved. He said that didn’t matter. Commissioner Katz wouldn’t come to court to explain why she said things about me that weren’t true. She did show up on the last day to sit and watch and she wouldn’t even look at me. All of the other people from DCF who came to court said really nice things about me. They would ask to work on my unit because they liked being with me. One CJTS worker even came to visit with me when she wasn’t working. I really miss her.

So now I am sitting in a room at the end of the hallway in the psych ward at York. I have to stay in my room 22 hours a day with a guard staring at me even when I shower and go to the bathroom. It’s humiliating. I was constantly listening to women screaming and crying and it was really hard to sleep. They just moved me down a different hallway were it’s not as crazy. I keep telling myself that this is just a nightmare but it doesn’t end. I know that I need to work on my issues and I want to work on my issues but this is not the place for that to happen. I am afraid of the women here and I don’t want to be around them. They yell comments to me and make fun of me when they see me.

People are telling me that a lot of the news stories are focused on DCF. I don’t want this to be about them, I don’t care about people who don’t care about me. I think that DCF is wrong for what they have done to me but making them look bad isn’t going to help me. I want people to understand who I am what my life has been like and how I ended up where I am. I have survived what would have destroyed most people and I’m not going to let it destroy me. I can’t change what has happened in the past but I can build a future just like every other 16 year old.

If Commissioner Katz wants to know who I am she should come to this prison and meet me. If she does, she will see that I am more than what is written on paper. I am a girl, with a lot going on in her life. We have all made mistakes but I don’t deserve this.
The first thing that I thought about after I read the letter was this should never happen to any 16 year old. How is she going to learn how to socialize with other people when they let her out when she turns 18? How is she going to get her high school diploma, will she have a GED instead and come out of prison handicapped with a GED?

In June 2009, a trans-woman was sent to Central Virginia Regional Jail, a men’s prison. The prison placed her in solitary confinement, for “her own protection” and a U.S. District Judge ordered her removed to a federal prison with treatment facilities and counseling for transgender prisoners. Yet, Connecticut is doing this to a 16 year old girl who has not been charged with any crime.

Jane Doe has had a very tumultuous life for her sixteen years she has been raped by family member, by other client of the juvenile facilities and she has been sexually assaulted by correction official. Of course she is going to strike out, what she needs is not imprisonment but therapy. 

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