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NCJ Number: 136102 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: Wayne County Jail Inmates v. Wayne County Sheriff: The Anatomy of a Lawsuit
Journal: Prison Journal  Volume:71  Issue:1  Dated:(Spring-Summer 1991)  Pages:4-23
Author(s): M Zalman
Date Published: 1991
Page Count: 20
Sponsoring Agency: National Institute of Justice/
Rockville, MD 20849
NCJRS Photocopy Services
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
Sale Source: National Institute of Justice/
NCJRS paper reproduction
Box 6000, Dept F
Rockville, MD 20849
United States of America

NCJRS Photocopy Services
Box 6000
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
United States of America
Type: Survey
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: In January 1971, six jail inmates in Wayne County (Michigan) sued the sheriff, the jail administrator, the county commissioners, and the State Department of Corrections for relief from prison conditions they alleged violated State and Federal constitutions as well as local housing laws. Based on information collected from some of the attorneys, judges, jail monitors, and administrators involved, this article examines the factors that led to the longevity of this case which is still alive 20 years after it was initially filed, despite a victory by the plaintiffs in the Michigan Supreme Court.
Abstract: The central concerns of this analysis focus on the dynamics and process of the lawsuit itself including: the personal and institutional forces that led to the original filing, the length of its implementation phase, the effect the suit had on jail conditions, and the impact of the suit on the morale and actions of jail administrators. The suit demonstrates the principle that noncompliance with litigated reform is inevitable when the defendants are unwilling to institute reform and the judiciary is too weak to compel it. In Wayne County, other factors which contributed to noncompliance included the continued tenure of the sheriff and the friction between the corrections department and the legislature. However, compliance finally began to occur when there was a fundamental shift in administrative thinking and action, in this case, when a new county administrator was appointed with a clear mandate to implement jail reform. 50 notes and 18 references
Main Term(s): Jail reform
Index Term(s): Inmate lawsuits; Michigan
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