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NCJ Number: 120655 Find in a Library
Title: AIDS and Prisoners' Rights Law: Deciphering the Administrative Guideposts
Journal: Prison Journal  Volume:69  Issue:1  Dated:(Spring-Summer 1989)  Pages:14-26
Author(s): A F Anderson
Date Published: 1989
Page Count: 13
Type: Issue Overview
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: A review of prison case law related to the AIDS problem and the identification of judicial concerns may clarify the task faced by prison administrators as they implement policies to prevent the spread of the disease among inmates, treat the ill, and protect their staff.
Abstract: Because prisoners do not forfeit all their constitutional rights upon incarceration, prison managers must assure that the withdrawal or limitation of these rights, as a result of HIV infection, is done in a spirit of "mutual accommodation" in which rights are balanced against the legitimate needs and objectives of the correctional institution. Although prison authorities are given a "wide-ranging deference" with regard to their security claims, any regulation impinging on a prisoner's rights must meet some standard of reasonableness. In terms of medical issues related to AIDS, an inmate's constitutionally guaranteed level of quality medical care is low; however, the administration of medical care must be monitored to avoid any deliberate denial of essential treatment. In order to protect the confidentiality of HIV-positive inmates, prison officials should label them under the generic "infectious disease" classification. While ample precedents support segregation of inmates with AIDS, it must be done in a nonpunitive manner; program participation may be curtailed if there is a rational basis to legitimate correctional goals and if participation is not an inmate right. Prison officials are also responsible for taking reasonable care to protect inmates from the transmission of communicable diseases and sexual assault. 10 footnotes, 24 references.
Main Term(s): AIDS/HIV in correctional facilities
Index Term(s): AIDS/HIV prevention; Inmate health care; Prisoner's rights
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