University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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Case Name Inmates of Bucks County Prison v. Warren JC-PA-0009
Docket / Court 79-1785 ( E.D. Pa. )
State/Territory Pennsylvania
Case Type(s) Jail Conditions
Case Summary
In May, 1979, inmates at the Bucks County Prison in Doylestown, Pennsylvania, filed a lawsuit under 42 U.S.C. §1983 against the county in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. The plaintiffs, represented by Buck's County Legal Aid and the Public Defender, asked the ... read more >
In May, 1979, inmates at the Bucks County Prison in Doylestown, Pennsylvania, filed a lawsuit under 42 U.S.C. §1983 against the county in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. The plaintiffs, represented by Buck's County Legal Aid and the Public Defender, asked the court for declaratory and injunctive relief, alleging that their constitutional rights had been violated by unspecified conditions of confinement. The class consisted of all current and future inmates at the Bucks County Prison.

On June 13, 1983, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania (Judge Clifford Scott Green) issued a consent decree in the case, providing for plaintiff relief in the areas of population caps, physical temperature of the facility, work release, medical care, including specific medical and gynecological care for women inmates, access to other facilities for women inmates, staffing, classification procedures, pre-trial procedures, and transfer procedures.

On March 31, 2003, the parties modified the consent decree through a stipulated agreement. The new agreement provided for changes in the areas of modification to the physical facility of the prison, construction of a mental health unit for women, provision of an exercise yard for women, record keeping, programming, rehabilitative treatment for drug and alcohol abusers, staff training, and a prison oversight board.

Kristen Sagar - 10/13/2006


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Affected Gender
Female
Male
Crowding
Crowding / caseload
Discrimination-basis
Sex discrimination
General
Bathing and hygiene
Classification / placement
Education
Recreation / Exercise
Rehabilitation
Religious programs / policies
Sanitation / living conditions
Medical/Mental Health
Medical care, general
Mental health care, general
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. § 1983
Defendant(s) Bucks County Prison
Plaintiff Description all current and future inmates at the Bucks County Prison.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations None on record
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Yes
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement
Source of Relief Settlement
Form of Settlement Court Approved Settlement or Consent Decree
Order Duration 1983 - n/a
Case Closing Year n/a
Case Ongoing Unknown
Case Listing JC-PA-0019 : Inmates of the Bucks County Correctional Facility v. County of Bucks (E.D. Pa.)
Additional Resources
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Case Studies After Decision: Implementation of Judicial Decrees in Correctional Settings
Written: Oct. 01, 1977
By: M. Kay Harris & Dudley P. Spiller (Temple University)
Citation: (1977)
[ Detail ] [ PDF ]

Docket(s)
No docket sheet currently in the collection
General Documents
Consent Decree 06/13/1983
JC-PA-0009-0001.pdf | Detail
Task Force Report: The Bucks County Task Force on Incarcerated Women and the Mentally Ill 12/05/2001
JC-PA-0009-0002.pdf | Detail
Agreement 03/31/2003
JC-PA-0009-0003.pdf | Detail
Judges Green, Clifford Scott (E.D. Pa.)
JC-PA-0009-0001
Monitors/Masters Rufe, Cynthia M. (Pennsylvania)
JC-PA-0009-0002
Plaintiff's Lawyers Alberts, Anita F. (Pennsylvania)
JC-PA-0009-0003
Gates, David (Pennsylvania)
JC-PA-0009-0001
Silver, Charles S. (Pennsylvania)
JC-PA-0009-0001
Sperling, Martha (Pennsylvania)
JC-PA-0009-0003
Wilder, Stuart (Pennsylvania)
JC-PA-0009-0001
Defendant's Lawyers Downey, James A. III (Pennsylvania)
JC-PA-0009-0003
McNamara, James M. (Pennsylvania)
JC-PA-0009-0001
Other Lawyers None on record

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