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Case Name Santiago v. Philadelphia JI-PA-0005
Docket / Court 74-2589 ( E.D. Pa. )
State/Territory Pennsylvania
Case Type(s) Juvenile Institution
Special Collection Strip Search Cases
Attorney Organization Juvenile Law Center
Legal Services/Legal Aid
Case Summary
In October of 1974, juvenile inmates at the Philadelphia Youth Study Center (YSC) filed a class action lawsuit under 42 U.S.C. §§ 1983, 1985(3), 2000d against the City of Philadelphia and local Family Court judges in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. The ... read more >
In October of 1974, juvenile inmates at the Philadelphia Youth Study Center (YSC) filed a class action lawsuit under 42 U.S.C. §§ 1983, 1985(3), 2000d against the City of Philadelphia and local Family Court judges in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. The plaintiffs, represented by Community Legal Services, Inc. of Philadelphia, and private attorneys, asked the court for declaratory and injunctive relief, and punitive damages for those members of the class that suffered injury, alleging that conditions at the YSC violated juveniles' First, Fourth, Fifth, Eighth, Thirteenth, and Fourteenth Amendment rights. Specifically, the plaintiffs contended: use of excessive force, including severe physical beatings and prolonged isolation; overcrowding; physical deterioration of the building coupled with rat and roach infestations; poor heating and ventilation leading to extreme temperatures; restricted movement of inmates due to excessive security measures; no outdoor, and limited indoor recreation; heavily restricted visitation rights; censored and undelivered mail; effective prohibition of phone use; inadequate sanitation and hygiene; inadequate medical, mental and dental health provision; unnecessary pelvic examinations for girls, bordering on sexual abuse; inadequate caloric intake for detainees; no written disciplinary code; forced and coerced labor without pay; no library access; substandard education, with no supervision; no social services provided for females, very limited services for males; inadequate staff-child ratios, and poor staff training; no proper classification for offenders at intake; and practices of racial segregation and discrimination. The alleged practices were also in violation of a direct command within the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, that the YSC immediately cease the use of any corporal punishment or isolation tactics.

In February 1975 a new Board of Managers was appointed to YSC and in September 1975 a new Executive Director was selected. Many changes began to take place at YSC.

On November 24, 1976, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania (Judge Joseph Simon Lord, III) certified the class as all juveniles who were or would become subject to incarceration at the YSC for declaratory and injunctive relief, but not for damages. Santiago v. City of Philadelphia, 72 F.R.D. 619 (E.D. Penn. 1976). The Court (Judge Lord) also recognized two sub-classes: all non-white juveniles, and all non-adjudicated juveniles within the greater class.

On July 20, 1977, the Court (Judge Lord) denied defendants' motion to dismiss. Santiago v. City of Philadelphia, 435 F. Supp. 136 (E.D. Penn. 1977). The Court determined that plaintiffs had made a prima facie case on all claims except the 42 U.S.C. 2000d racial discrimination claim, because the plaintiffs had not exhausted their administrative remedies.

On November 1, 1977, the parties began collaboration on a Working Agreement.

On October 24, 1978, the parties signed a Stipulation of Settlement addressing all of the allegations from the 1974 lawsuit. However, on December 29, 1978 the Court (Judge Lord) ordered the "Stipulation in Partial Settlement of This Action," which was much more limited in scope. This contained a number of provisions with the primary purposes of: enhancing the mandatory education policy and its implementation on an individual level, taking account of age, education level, and disciplinary status; eliminating corporal punishment within YSC; making sure that the classrooms had adequate supplies and staff for the education of all students; hiring a librarian and maintaining a library; and creating a monitoring scheme. Plaintiffs' counsel had free and open access to all records and admission information. Pennsylvania was to designate an evaluation team to inspect YSC 3 months after the Stipulation went into effect and every 4 months after.

On July 15, 1980 the parties submitted an Amended Stipulation in Partial Settlement to the court. As amended the Stipulation contained several provisions from the initial out-of-court agreement of October 1978. Specifically it required that: requested privacy be allowed, and not construed as isolation; isolation was never to be used as a punishment or for the convenience of the staff, but could be used to protect a resident from the themselves or others; prolonged isolation of up to 4 hours required a doctor's approval; during isolation, detainees must have access to clean, dry, well-lit rooms, dressed beds, hygiene supplies, access to education supplies, medical care, bathrooms, and correspondence; and recreation and creative activity periods were created and enforced. Also there were modifications to the visitation hours.

In February 1983, the YSC Board of Managers was dissolved, and supervision was assumed directly by the City of Philadelphia. Accordingly the parties reevaluated the Stipulation Agreement and reissued it in its entirety with some small changes on December 12, 1984. On January 15, 1985, the Court (Judge Lord) entered the Second Amended Stipulation in Partial Settlement of This Action. The new amendments added more complex protocol for admission and discharge from YSC, to deal with overcrowding.

On January 21, 1988, the Court (Judge Lord) entered the Third Amended Stipulation in Partial Settlement, to go into effect January 31, 1988. In addition to being a comprehensive document containing all provisions binding the parties, it provided for a two-phase population cap, where the YSC would reduce its maximum population to 120 residents by January 31, 1988, and then 105 residents by February 15, 1988. Together with the requirements listed above, the final Stipulation specifically required: handbooks for the residents, which explained proscribed behavior and punishments; grievance procedures; beds for each resident and fresh bedding; adequate heating, air conditioning, and ventilation; freedom of movement for residents; non-bedroom private space for residents; phone access for residents unless abused; access to psychiatric counseling for residents; hygiene products and clean clothes for all residents; meals and health in accordance with law and dietary recommendations; bathrooms cleaned daily; regular supervision to prevent fights; no discrimination based on race, gender, or sexual orientation; and training for all employees.

On January 25, 1988, the Court (Judge Lord) entered an order appointing "Offender Aid and Restoration" as the monitor for the case.

Because PACER has no docket, we have no more information on this file.

Greg Venker - 05/24/2006

compress summary

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Issues and Causes of Action
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Affected Gender
Constitutional Clause
Cruel and Unusual Punishment
Due Process
Equal Protection
Freedom of speech/association
Crowding / caseload
Pre-PLRA Population Cap
Race discrimination
Sex discrimination
Access to lawyers or judicial system
Assault/abuse by residents/inmates/students
Assault/abuse by staff
Bathing and hygiene
Classification / placement
Disciplinary procedures
Disciplinary segregation
Fire safety
Food service / nutrition / hydration
Library (non-law) access
Personal injury
Racial segregation
Recreation / Exercise
Restraints : physical
Sanitation / living conditions
Sex w/ staff; sexual harassment by staff
Staff (number, training, qualifications, wages)
Strip search policy
Suicide prevention
Totality of conditions
Medical/Mental Health
Dental care
Medical care, general
Medication, administration of
Mental health care, general
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Type of Facility
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. § 1983
Title VI, Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. § 2000d et seq.
Defendant(s) Philadelphia Youth Study Center
Plaintiff Description All juveniles who were or would become subject to incarceration at the YSC (for declaratory and injunctive relief, no class was certified for damages).
Indexed Lawyer Organizations Juvenile Law Center
Legal Services/Legal Aid
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Yes
Filed Pro Se No
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief Damages
Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement
Source of Relief Litigation
Form of Settlement Court Approved Settlement or Consent Decree
Order Duration 1978 - n/a
Filing Year 1974
Case Ongoing No reason to think so
Additional Resources
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  Jail Strip-Search Cases: Patterns and Participants
Date: Spring 2008
By: Margo Schlanger (Washington University in St. Louis Faculty)
Citation: 71 Law & Contemp. Problems 65 (2008)
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

No docket sheet currently in the collection
General Documents
Second Amended Complaint
JI-PA-0005-0001.pdf | Detail
Date: 12/01/1975
Reported Opinion (72 F.R.D. 619) (E.D. Pa.)
JI-PA-0005-0013.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Date: 11/24/1976
Source: Google Scholar
Opinion (435 F.Supp. 136) (E.D. Pa.)
JI-PA-0005-0012.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Date: 07/20/1977
Source: Google Scholar
Stipulation of Settlement
JI-PA-0005-0004.pdf | Detail
Date: 12/22/1978
Stipulation in Partial Settlement of this Action
JI-PA-0005-0005.pdf | Detail
Date: 12/29/1979
Amended Stipulation in Partial Settlement of this Action
JI-PA-0005-0006.pdf | Detail
Date: 07/15/1980
Second Amended Stipulation in Partial Settlement of this Action
JI-PA-0005-0007.pdf | Detail
Date: 01/14/1985
Third Amended Stipulation in Partial Settlement of this Action
JI-PA-0005-0009.pdf | Detail
Date: 01/11/1988
Order (E.D. Pa.)
JI-PA-0005-0008.pdf | Detail
Date: 01/21/1988
Order Appointing Monitor (E.D. Pa.)
JI-PA-0005-0010.pdf | Detail
Date: 01/25/1988
Memorandum (1989 WL 3494 / 1989 U.S.Dist.LEXIS 416) (E.D. Pa.)
JI-PA-0005-0014.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Date: 01/17/1989
Opinion (1990 WL 45282 / 1990 U.S.Dist.LEXIS 4308) (E.D. Pa.)
JI-PA-0005-0015.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Date: 04/04/1990
JI-PA-0005-0011.pdf | Detail
Date: 06/24/1991
Judges Lord, Joseph Simon III (E.D. Pa.)
JI-PA-0005-0004 | JI-PA-0005-0005 | JI-PA-0005-0006 | JI-PA-0005-0007 | JI-PA-0005-0008 | JI-PA-0005-0009 | JI-PA-0005-0010 | JI-PA-0005-0012 | JI-PA-0005-0013 | JI-PA-0005-0014 | JI-PA-0005-0015
Monitors/Masters Wolf, Robert B. (Pennsylvania)
JI-PA-0005-0014 | JI-PA-0005-0015
Plaintiff's Lawyers Echternach, Kathy L. (Pennsylvania)
Goldberg, Steven S. (Pennsylvania)
JI-PA-0005-0014 | JI-PA-0005-0015
Josephson, Ellen (Pennsylvania)
JI-PA-0005-0001 | JI-PA-0005-0004 | JI-PA-0005-0012 | JI-PA-0005-0013
Levick, Marsha (Pennsylvania)
Levine, Jack J. (Pennsylvania)
JI-PA-0005-0001 | JI-PA-0005-0004 | JI-PA-0005-0005 | JI-PA-0005-0006 | JI-PA-0005-0012 | JI-PA-0005-0013 | JI-PA-0005-0014 | JI-PA-0005-0015
Palamarchuk, Alexander J. (Pennsylvania)
JI-PA-0005-0004 | JI-PA-0005-0005 | JI-PA-0005-0012
Schwartz, Robert G. (Pennsylvania)
JI-PA-0005-0007 | JI-PA-0005-0009 | JI-PA-0005-0011 | JI-PA-0005-0014 | JI-PA-0005-0015
Stein, Jonathan M. (Pennsylvania)
JI-PA-0005-0001 | JI-PA-0005-0004 | JI-PA-0005-0005 | JI-PA-0005-0006 | JI-PA-0005-0012 | JI-PA-0005-0013 | JI-PA-0005-0014 | JI-PA-0005-0015
Stotland, Janet F. (Pennsylvania)
JI-PA-0005-0005 | JI-PA-0005-0012 | JI-PA-0005-0014 | JI-PA-0005-0015
Vilim, Guy (Pennsylvania)
Waserstein, Aeda (Pennsylvania)
JI-PA-0005-0014 | JI-PA-0005-0015
Defendant's Lawyers Abramson, Howland W. (Pennsylvania)
Albert, Sheldon L. (Pennsylvania)
Alexander, Sadie (Pennsylvania)
Angell, M. Faith (Pennsylvania)
JI-PA-0005-0005 | JI-PA-0005-0012
Cammisa, Agostino (Pennsylvania)
JI-PA-0005-0004 | JI-PA-0005-0005 | JI-PA-0005-0012 | JI-PA-0005-0013 | JI-PA-0005-0014 | JI-PA-0005-0015
Clark, Tama (Pennsylvania)
Gilbert, Alan H. (Pennsylvania)
JI-PA-0005-0012 | JI-PA-0005-0014 | JI-PA-0005-0015
Gold, Richard J. (Pennsylvania)
JI-PA-0005-0007 | JI-PA-0005-0009 | JI-PA-0005-0014
Lally, Joseph R. (Pennsylvania)
JI-PA-0005-0004 | JI-PA-0005-0005 | JI-PA-0005-0012 | JI-PA-0005-0013
Langsam, Saul L. (Pennsylvania)
Lear, Robert T. (Pennsylvania)
Marroletti, Alfred (Pennsylvania)
JI-PA-0005-0004 | JI-PA-0005-0006 | JI-PA-0005-0007 | JI-PA-0005-0014 | JI-PA-0005-0015
Masciantonio, Dominic M. (Pennsylvania)
JI-PA-0005-0009 | JI-PA-0005-0014 | JI-PA-0005-0015
Posner, Nathan (Pennsylvania)
Rieser, Leonard (District of Columbia)
Singley, Carl E. (Pennsylvania)
Strain, Joseph F. (Pennsylvania)
JI-PA-0005-0014 | JI-PA-0005-0015

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