Feds Say Disabled Inmates’ Rights Violated In Florida

January 10, 2017

The U.S. Justice Department on Monday moved to intervene in a nearly year-old lawsuit against the Florida Department of Corrections, alleging that the state’s prison agency “systematically violates the rights of inmates with disabilities.”

The 12-page document, filed in federal court in Tallahassee, focused on inmates who are deaf or hard of hearing.

The Justice Department, in part, alleged that the state routinely fails to provide hearing aids, interpreters and types of communication devices that inmates could use to contact attorneys, families or friends.

The organization Disability Rights Florida filed the lawsuit last January against the Department of Corrections, alleging violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act and other laws. In a document filed in June, the department denied systemic violations of laws designed to protect people with disabilities.


15 Responses to “Feds Say Disabled Inmates’ Rights Violated In Florida”

  1. tmoe on January 14th, 2017 6:01 am

    Chris after spending a decade in Florida prisons no they don’t have health or dental so if u know so much take a trip inside and see if your word is true think it could happen to you or your family I’m not bitter but the reality is if u so called know it all then u should do more than hide behind your texts smh you all are sadd

  2. nod on January 12th, 2017 6:45 pm

    Palliative treatment is good enough for them until they get out and can pay for it themselves

  3. David Huie Green on January 12th, 2017 12:42 pm

    Just for fun, consider the fact that federal law forbids withholding medication needed by inmates AND forbids any use whatsoever of marijuana as medicine.

    Florida’s approval of marijuana for certain medical treatment specifically excludes giving pot to inmates for medicine.

    Therefore, federal law both requires and forbids marijuana be provided to some sick state inmates.

    Call your lawyers, folks.

    David for gainfully employed lawyers

  4. No Excuses on January 11th, 2017 4:46 pm

    I rarely agree with Kate, and more often agree with Chris, but you are both correct in this situation.

    MHO is that if you remove an individual from society and incarcerate him, then you are required to provide them with the minimum care that they need to function. You can’t “cherry pick” the American’s with Disabilities Act, and if a prisoner needs something in order to function (be it a hearing aide or medication) then it should be provided. That’s part of the cost of incarcerating a person. I do agree that it’s shameful that many in society don’t have what they need – but it doesn’t excuse failure to provide for those who are incarcerated. And yes, Chris, you are right – they will continue to complain, but you can ignore what isn’t important!

  5. chris in Molino on January 11th, 2017 12:34 pm

    @Kate, im sorry but Florida inmates have medical, dental, and mental health care commensurate with that of you or i. Furthermore, that care is more readily available to them than it is to most in the general public. Also, inmates must always have something to complain about, it’s how they vent stress of being incarcerated. Once satisfied with one complaint, rest assured there will be another.

  6. Kate on January 11th, 2017 9:35 am

    Such ignorance is a serious disgrace to Americans and Floridians. We are talking about people who are truly deaf and need an interpreter, people who are MS patients who may have a bad check because they were too sick to think about how much money they had left in checking, people who can only be moved in a wheelchair and are denied aaht wheelchair or given one that is 5 sizes to small. Seriously mentally ill people who truly need medication are denied those meds because the system doesn’t want to pay a psych Dr. to come in because it will cost dollars. There are real disabilities in this world that require care whether you have committed a real crime or the sytem makes a mistake and arrests you and will not give you an interpreter so you can speak the truth. Sad when you are so negative. Doesn’t your minister talk about visiting the inprisoned?

  7. Concerned on January 11th, 2017 3:22 am

    It is a sad day when convicted criminals have more rights than our elderly. Give them a wipe off board so they can write their conversations on it! Much cheaper than hearing aids or hiring interpreters.

  8. chris in Molino on January 10th, 2017 8:40 pm

    @Robert- While i agree the war on drugs is a failure and our own govt allows it coming here to fund it’s own agenda is hypocrisy, what are we supposed to do just say it’s ok ? Meth an heroin is an epidemic in our area. It’s sickening. A majority of people who commit crimes in this area either smoke it, shoot it, sell it, or steal to get it. Fact. So is there a better idea than to have our LEOS fight to keep it off the street ? Im all ears.

  9. Robert on January 10th, 2017 4:15 pm

    It seems like a good idea to lock up more people and teach them a lesson by not providing anything to them. It will make them think twice about committing a crime when they get out. Right? Just like the war on drugs is a failure so is the prison system. So keep doing it. Real smart.

  10. I am human on January 10th, 2017 12:50 pm

    Reading these comments reminds me of how greedy and hateful people have become towards each other. If you claim to be a Christian and believe what you say, I pity you.

  11. nod on January 10th, 2017 11:07 am

    Only in America!!!

  12. willy on January 10th, 2017 9:04 am

    here we go again. Let’s feel sorry for inmates who violated someone else’s rights but still want to have theirs. This is what happens when liberal lawyers(like the ACLU) scream the loudest and are allowed to still practice. Hmmmm, I wonder if they’re from Hollywood…………

  13. M in Bratt on January 10th, 2017 8:31 am

    There is something dreadfully wrong when the Federal Government continuously takes states to court over issues that clearly should be up to the individual states. We can only hope that some of this bologna will stop when Jeff Sessions takes over as AG, and Trump puts some sanity back on the Supreme Court.

  14. A citizen on January 10th, 2017 6:41 am

    Why can’t the families provide these things for them? Why does it have to be the state providing when the state didn’t make them commit the crimes. I’m sick & tired of hearing about inmates rights. Where are the rights to the victims? There aren’t any, most are dead, if not some of their insides are because they were raped & abused & just cannot find a way to cope, & they really can’t live being a victim to actually heal & they will never totally heal, they were robbed of their lives in a way because like during a break in even if you weren’t at home your peace was stolen.

  15. just sayin on January 10th, 2017 4:40 am

    okay i know these inmates have rights just like they knew they was either hard of hearing before committing crimes now taxpayers going to get stuck buying hearing aides and veterans people like me has paid my dues can’t get a thank u wowwwww i’am not a veteran but i’ve worked 32 years not looking to buy hearing aides for inmates sorry

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