News & Events

  • Prisoners Sue San Bernardino County Jail

    February, 2016

    Prisoners in the San Bernardino County Jail have filed a federal class action lawsuit challenging unconstitutional conditions, including failure to provide basic medical and mental health care, reasonable accommodations for disabilities, and protection from violence by other prisoners

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  • California Resolves Long-running Lawsuit Over Youth Prisons

    February, 2016

    After 12 years of reform efforts, conditions in California’s Department of Juvenile Justice Facilities  have improved greatly.  As a result, the parties have agreed to end court oversight and monitoring in the Farrell class action lawsuit.

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  • Leaking and Mold Discovered at Substance Abuse Treatment Facility (SATF)

    February, 2016

    Leaking and mold are not new to SATF.  But, recent heavy rains have made problems there much worse.  People incarcerated at the prison report that leaking is so bad that during rains they slip and fall in puddles that form inside the housing units, they sleep in soaking wet beds, and eat in dining halls where moldy, rain-soaked ceiling tiles fall in to their food.  The Prison Law Office recently brought their stories and documentation of the problem to the attention of the Secretary of the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR).

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  • New Special Master Report in Division of Juvenile Justice Case

    January, 2016

    The Special Master in the Farrell v. Cate case released the Thirty-third Quarterly Report. Farrell is a lawsuit brought to remedy abysmal conditions in the DJJ, the state’s lock-up units for young offenders.

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  • PA Corrections Sec’y Wetzel Inspired by Trip to German and Dutch Prisons

    December, 2015

    The transitional housing units created by Secretary John Wetzel in Pennsylvania were inspired by a Prison Law Office sponsored trip to German and Dutch prisons.  Prisoners sleep in real beds, can dress as they like, cook their own meals, are never locked in solitary for more than eight hours, and get paid real wages for their work so they have some savings when they’re released. German recidivism rate after three years is still 35 percent. But the U.S. recidivism rate, despite our much harsher treatment – is almost twice that.  Full Story.