On February 21, 1978, the Michigan Association for Retarded Citizens (MARC) and the Plymouth Association for Retarded Citizens (PARC) filed a class action lawsuit under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 against the Michigan Department of Mental Health in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of ...
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On February 21, 1978, the Michigan Association for Retarded Citizens (MARC) and the Plymouth Association for Retarded Citizens (PARC) filed a class action lawsuit under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 against the Michigan Department of Mental Health in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan. The plaintiffs, represented by Michigan Protection and Advocacy Services for Developmentally Disabled Citizens, asked the district court for declaratory and injunctive relief, alleging that the defendants had violated the constitutional rights of the mentally retarded persons who were residents of the Plymouth Center for Human Development. Specifically, they complained of abuse of the residents and mismanagement of the institution.
On March 3, 1978, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan (Judge Charles Wycliffe Joiner) issued a preliminary injunction, the substance of which had been agreed to by the parties. This injunction halted new admissions to the center, compelled compliance with federal standards for staff-to-patient ratios, assured relatives of greater access to residents, ordered the separation of aggressive and defenseless residents, ordered the center to set up a system of staff accountability in which each resident would be the direct responsibility of a particular staff member, and guaranteed annual physical and mental examinations for all residents.
On August 30, 1979, the district court (Judge Joiner) issued a consent decree in the case. The decree addressed the same areas included in the preliminary injunction, and it also provided for the creation of community programs, patient habilitation and life skills development programs, and personnel and training standards. Michigan Ass'n for Retarded Citizens v. Smith, 475 F.Supp. 990 (E.D.Mich. 1979).
After the consent decree had been entered by the district court, the American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees (a labor union) asked to be allowed to intervene in the case. The district court (Judge Joiner) denied the request, and the union appealed. On August 21, 1981, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit (Judge Harry Phillips) affirmed the district court's decision. Michigan Ass'n for Retarded Citizens v. Smith, 657 F.2d 102 (6th Cir. 1981).
We have no further information on the proceedings in this case.Kristen Sagar - 07/21/2006