Technical Brief: Transgender People and HIV in Prisons and other Closed Settings

Publications - Released in 2022

Transgender people often experience multiple and intersecting forms of discrimination, including in criminal justice systems. Evidence indicates that such marginalisation, criminalisation and discrimination can lead to greater vulnerability to and risk of long-term mental and physical health issues, including increased risk of HIV and other sexually transmitted infections, and experience of sexual assault.

This technical brief sets out guiding principles and targeted interventions aimed at supporting countries in reducing the risk of HIV infection and transmission among, and ensuring adequate and accessible health care for, transgender people deprived of liberty by State authorities in prisons and other closed settings. Policymakers and prison authorities should understand the needs of transgender people and incorporate the proposed evidence- and human rights-based interventions and international standards into their prison policies and strategies, applying them to all people in prison.


 Document(1.08 MB)


  • United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC)
  • United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)
  • United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA)
  • World Health Organization (WHO)
  • Penal Reform International (PRI)