MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — Alabama's plan to improve correctional and mental health staffing in state prisons is vague and inadequate, attorneys for inmates told a federal judge last week.
The attorneys for inmates criticized the state's proposal submitted to U.S. District Judge Myron Thompson.
"Commissioner Jefferson Dunn and Associate Commissioner Ruth Naglich appear not to recognize that they have been found to be running a correctional system that provides horrendously inadequate mental health care," wrote Maria Morris, an attorney representing the inmates.
Thompson ordered Alabama to overhaul conditions in June after finding that psychiatric care of state inmates is so "horrendously inadequate" that it violates the U.S. Constitution's ban on cruel and unusual punishment. One of the inmates committed suicide days after testifying in federal court about his treatment in prison.
Thompson ordered the state to submit a plan to address shortages of correctional and mental health staff.
The Department of Corrections told the judge in a filing this month that it was increasing staff and conducting a comprehensive analysis to determine security staffing needs, and had begun some of those steps before Thompson's ruling.
Inmates' attorneys argued the state should have deadlines for increasing staff and benchmarks for caseloads or the plan "will remain nothing more than words."
Thompson scheduled an Oct. 30 hearing on plaintiffs' request for additional information about the state's plan.
- Attorneys says Alabama prison plan inadequate, vague
- Alabama prison guard in custody
- Trump issues vague threat to begin deporting 'millions' of undocumented immigrants next week
- Alabama governor: We're working to fix prisons
- Alabama prison commissioner honored despite troubles
- Alabama attorney dies days after collapsing in courtroom
- Bridgette Marshall, wife of Alabama's attorney general, dies
- No prosecutions planned over Alabama crossover voting
- Alabama governor to announce transportation improvement plan
- Inmate escapes from Alabama prison for elderly and sick