- Associated Press - Tuesday, February 14, 2017

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) - California could make it easier for inmates to legally change their names or gender identification.

State Sen. Toni Atkins, a Democrat from San Diego, said Tuesday that her bill, SB310, would let state prison inmates apply for the legal changes without first getting approval from several state correctional officials.

Her bill would also apply to inmates in county jails.

The proposal comes weeks after transgender inmate Shiloh Quine became the first U.S. inmate to have state-paid sex-reassignment surgery.

The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation used her given name until after the surgery, though she has lived as a woman since 2009.

Atkin’s bill would give inmates the same right to seek the legal changes as those who aren’t incarcerated.

She says it would improve inmates’ chances of being rehabilitated.

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