Disability Advocates v. New York State Office of Mental Health. Docket 1:02-cv-04002-GEL (S.D.N.Y), May 28, 2002.
Disability Advocates filed a lawsuit on behalf of New York state prisoners with mental illness. Plaintiffs specifically alleged that a lack of adequate mental health care in New York prisons resulted in the placement of prisoners with mental illness in segregation, which, in turn, caused greater psychiatric harm to those prisoners. The parties settled the case in 2007. The settlement, among other things, requires that prisoners with serious mental illness confined in Special Housing Units receive a minimum of two hours per day of out of cell treatment and that individuals in the Residential Mental Health Unit received as many as four hours of treatment, in addition to an hour of recreation.
The University of Michigan Law School’s Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse has a case profile and links to the complaint, report of plaintiff’s expert, and the settlement agreement – click here.
Keywords: New York, mental illness, SHU, mental health, settlement, federal court, 1983, eighth amendment, unconstitutional, lawsuit