On May 28, 2015, the Department of Justice, Civil Rights Division, filed a suit against the state of Alabama and its Department of Corrections (ADOC) for heinous sexual abuse committed by the ADOC's male officers at the Julia Tutwiler Prison for Women in Wetumpka, Alabama. The parties reached a ...
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On May 28, 2015, the Department of Justice, Civil Rights Division, filed a suit against the state of Alabama and its Department of Corrections (ADOC) for heinous sexual abuse committed by the ADOC's male officers at the Julia Tutwiler Prison for Women in Wetumpka, Alabama. The parties reached a settlement agreement and filed a joint motion to dismiss the case, which was accepted by the court's opinion issued on June 18, 2015. 2015 WL 3796526.
The court consequently issued a consent decree and closed the case. The settlement is monitored by a designated monitor, Jennie Lancaster, who began monitoring the case on Sept. 17, 2015. The settlement requires the ADOC and Tutwiler to make recommended changes within the period of the filing of three compliance reports (to be filed every six months). The substantive part of the settlement agreement contains 13 sections: General Policies and Procedures; Camera Management; Staffing; Training; Inmate Education; Gender-Responsive Classification; Risk Assessment; Inmates' Right to Privacy; Reporting Allegations of Sexual Abuse and Sexual Harassment; Official Response to an Allegation of Sexual Abuse and Sexual Harassment; Referrals and Investigations; Staff Disciplinary Actions; Limited English Proficient (LEP) Inmates.
The policy section of the agreement, inter alia,
requires the ADOC and Tutwiler to develop, submit to the Monitor and DOJ for review and implement policies and procedures regarding the management of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex, and gender nonconforming inmates; comply with its policy that ensures women receive essential supplies; develop and implement policies and procedures that incorporate gender-responsive strategies, including policies and procedures governing the use of force against women inmates and discipline of women inmates; to develop, submit to the Monitor and DOJ for review and implement facility-specific policies and operational practices specific to Tutwiler' s population regarding the Supervision and monitoring necessary to prevent inmates from being exposed to an unreasonable risk of harm from sexual abuse and harassment; revise and/or develop and implement, as necessary, any other policies, practices, procedures, protocols, training curricula, and other written documents, including but not limited to, screening tools, logs, handbooks, manuals, and forms.
The first monitor report was filed on February 26, 2016 on the assessment period for May 28 - December 4, 2015. There, the monitor noted positive progress and grant of a 3-month extension for compliance on the general policies and procedures and training. Soojin Cha - 05/20/2016