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Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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Case Name Disability Rights Florida v. Jones DR-FL-0006
Docket / Court 3:18-cv-00179-HES-JRK ( M.D. Fla. )
State/Territory Florida
Case Type(s) Disability Rights-Pub. Accom.
Case Summary
On January 30, 2018, Disability Rights Florida filed this suit in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida against the Florida Department of Corrections (FDOC). The case was assigned to Judge Robert Hinkle. The plaintiff alleged that FDOC provided inadequate mental health ... read more >
On January 30, 2018, Disability Rights Florida filed this suit in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida against the Florida Department of Corrections (FDOC). The case was assigned to Judge Robert Hinkle. The plaintiff alleged that FDOC provided inadequate mental health treatment to prisoners in violation of the Eighth Amendment, Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) 42 U.S.C. §§ 12132, and the Rehabilitation Act 29 U.S.C. § 701. The plaintiff brought the suit under 42 U.S.C § 1983, the ADA, and the Rehabilitation Act and sought declaratory and injunctive relief, in addition to attorneys' fees.

Specifically, the complaint alleged a number of constitutional and statutory violations including a lack of individualized treatment planning, a lack of individualized treatment services, an inadequate number of hours for out-of-cell treatment and activities, inadequate treatment for patients engaging in self-injurious behavior, inappropriate psychotropic medication practices, and inadequate discharge planning. The complaint also alleged excessive use of isolation and restraint on inpatient mental health units, an inadequate punitive or disciplinary process for patients on the inpatient mental health units, limited to no coordination between medical and mental health teams for those in inpatient mental health units, and inadequate training of security and clinical staff assigned to the inpatient mental health units.

In December 2016, before this suit was filed, the plaintiff notified the defendant of its intention to file this lawsuit and sent defendant a draft copy of the complaint and a letter suggesting that the parties engage in mediation. Beginning in January 2017, the parties engaged in pre-litigation mediation sessions with Judge Harvey E. Scheslinger in order to negotiate a resolution.

In December of 2017, after twelve months of mediation, the parties reached a final agreement. The parties agreed to remedy the constitutional violations, submit to independent monitoring, and pay attorneys' fees. In order to remedy the constitutional violations, the defendant promised to create and revise individualized treatment plans, mandate a minimum number of out-of-cell hours, appropriately treat inmates engaging in self-injurious behavior, appropriately administer psychotropic medication, and implement discharge planning. Finally, the parties agreed that Judge Schleslinger should preside over the case and enforce the settlement agreement because of his involvement with the mediation process.

On January 31, 2018, the parties filed a joint motion in which they asked the court to approve the proposed settlement agreement. After transferring the case to Judge Schlesinger, the court adopted the settlement agreement on February 7, 2018. The court retains jurisdiction over the case until December 31, 2020, or 60 days after the receipt of the final monitoring report, whichever is sooner.

As of October 17, 2018 there has been no docket activity subsequent to the approved settlement.

Hope Brinn - 10/18/2018


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Constitutional Clause
Cruel and Unusual Punishment
Content of Injunction
Goals and Timekeeping
Monitoring
Reasonable Accommodation
Training
Defendant-type
Corrections
Disability
Mental impairment
Discrimination-basis
Disability (inc. reasonable accommodations)
General
Confinement/isolation
Discharge & termination plans
Disparate Treatment
Failure to train
Government Services (specify)
Improper treatment of mentally ill suspects
Individualized planning
Informed consent/involuntary medication
Pattern or Practice
Placement in mental health facilities
Reasonable Accommodations
Reasonable Modifications
Rehabilitation
Restraints : physical
Staff (number, training, qualifications, wages)
Medical/Mental Health
Medication, administration of
Mental health care, general
Self-injurious behaviors
Mental Disability
Mental Illness, Unspecified
Plaintiff Type
Non-profit NON-religious organization
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. § 1983
Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), 42 U.S.C. §§ 12111 et seq.
Section 504 (Rehabilitation Act), 29 U.S.C. § 701
Defendant(s) Florida Department of Corrections
Plaintiff Description Plaintiff, Disability Rights Florida, is a Protection & Advocacy System (P&A) mandated under the federal Individuals with Mental Illness Act to ensure that rights of individuals with mental illnesses are protected.
Class action status sought No
Class action status granted No
Filed Pro Se No
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief Attorneys fees
Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement
Source of Relief Litigation
Settlement
Form of Settlement Court Approved Settlement or Consent Decree
Order Duration 2018 - 2020
Filing Year 2018
Case Ongoing Yes
Docket(s)
3:18-cv-179 (M.D. Fla.)
DR-FL-0006-9000.pdf | Detail
Date: 08/07/2018
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Complaint [ECF# 1]
DR-FL-0006-0002.pdf | Detail
Date: 01/30/2018
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Settlement Agreement [ECF# 3-1]
DR-FL-0006-0001.pdf | Detail
Date: 01/31/2018
Source: Plaintiffs' counsel
Joint Motion for Court Adoption of Settlement Agreement [ECF# 3]
DR-FL-0006-0003.pdf | Detail
Date: 01/31/2018
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Settlement Agreement [ECF# 10]
DR-FL-0006-0004.pdf | Detail
Date: 02/08/2018
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Judges Klindt, James R. (M.D. Fla.) [Magistrate]
DR-FL-0006-9000
Schlesinger, Harvey Erwin (M.D. Fla.)
DR-FL-0006-9000
Plaintiff's Lawyers Boyer, David Allen (Florida)
DR-FL-0006-0002 | DR-FL-0006-0003 | DR-FL-0006-9000
Costello, Andrea Hope (Florida)
DR-FL-0006-0002 | DR-FL-0006-0003 | DR-FL-0006-9000
Jones, Christopher Michael (Florida)
DR-FL-0006-0002 | DR-FL-0006-0004 | DR-FL-0006-9000
Lentz, Kristen Cooley (Florida)
DR-FL-0006-0002 | DR-FL-0006-0003 | DR-FL-0006-9000
McDonald, Maryellen (Florida)
DR-FL-0006-0001 | DR-FL-0006-0004
Renstrom, Laura Beard (Florida)
DR-FL-0006-0002 | DR-FL-0006-9000
Schulz, George E. Jr. (Florida)
DR-FL-0006-0002 | DR-FL-0006-0003 | DR-FL-0006-9000
Sleasman, Peter P. (Florida)
DR-FL-0006-0002 | DR-FL-0006-0003 | DR-FL-0006-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Burnsed, Dorothy (Florida)
DR-FL-0006-0003 | DR-FL-0006-9000
Carter, Joel Steven (Florida)
DR-FL-0006-9000
Coles, Miriam R. (Florida)
DR-FL-0006-9000
Reynolds, Jay Patrick (Florida)
DR-FL-0006-9000
Steely, Kenneth S. (Florida)
DR-FL-0006-0003 | DR-FL-0006-9000

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