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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 67424 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: CIVIL RIGHTS OF THE INSTITUTIONALIZED - REPORT OF THE COMMITTEE ON THE JUDICIARY, UNITED STATES SENATE ON S 10 TOGETHER WITH MINORITY AND ADDITIONAL VIEWS
Author(s): ANON
Corporate Author: US Congress
Senate Cmtte on the Judiciary
United States of America
Date Published: 1979
Page Count: 71
Sponsoring Agency: National Institute of Justice/
Rockville, MD 20849
US Congress
Washington, DC 20510
Publication Number: 96-416; CALENDAR NO 446
Sale Source: National Institute of Justice/
NCJRS paper reproduction
Box 6000, Dept F
Rockville, MD 20849
United States of America
Document: PDF
Type: Legislative/Regulatory Material
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: THE REPORT PROVIDES THE HISTORY AND SUPPORTIVE REASONS FOR A SENATE BILL GIVING THE UNITED STATES ATTORNEY GENERAL THE AUTHORITY TO PROTECT THE RIGHTS OF INSTITUTIONALIZED PERSONS.
Abstract: SINCE 1971, THE ATTORNEY GENERAL HAS PARTICIPATED IN SEVERAL CIVIL ACTIONS TO REDRESS WIDESPREAD VIOLATIONS OF CONSTITUTIONAL AND FEDERAL STATUTORY RIGHTS OF PERSONS LIVING IN STATE INSTITUTIONS. IN EVERY SUIT THE COURTS HAVE UPHELD THE PLAINTIFF'S RIGHTS, AND AS A RESULT LIVING CONDITIONS HAVE IMPROVED FOR THE MENTALLY-ILL AND RETARDED IN STATE HOSPITALS AND ADULT AND JUVENILE PRISONERS. PERSONS UNNECESSARILY OR IMPROPERLY COMMITTED TO INSTITUTIONS HAVE BEEN RELEASED OR REMOVED TO COMMUNITY RESIDENCES. THIS LEGISLATION HAS BEEN PROPOSED BECAUSE THE PROGRESS OF THE FEDERAL LITIGATION PROGRAM IS THREATENED BY FEDERAL COURT DECISIONS IN MARYLAND AND MONTANA WHICH HAVE RULED THAT THE ATTORNEY GENERAL LACKED EXPRESS AUTHORITY TO INITIATE CIVIL ACTIONS CHALLENGING CONDITIONS IN STATE FACILITIES FOR THE MENTALLY RETARDED. THE PROPOSED BILL DOES NOT CREATE ANY NEW RIGHTS, BUT CODIFIES THE ATTORNEY GENERAL'S AUTHORITY TO INITIATE AND INTERVENE IN SUITS TO REDRESS SERIOUS AND PERVASIVE PATTERNS OF INSTITUTIONAL ABUSE. THE TEXT OF THE BILL IS FOLLOWED BY A DETAILED DISCUSSION OF LEGISLATIVE HISTORY, ACTIVITIES OF THE JUSTICE DEPARTMENT, AND REASONS FOR THE LAW SUCH AS INADEQUACY OF PRIVATE SOURCES TO PROTECT THE RIGHTS OF THE INSTITUTIONALIZED. THE BILL'S CONSTITUTIONALITY AND STANDARDS FOR FILING SUITS ARE EXAMINED ALONG WITH FEDERAL PRISON COMPLIANCE. A SECTION-BY-SECTION ANALYSIS OF THE PROVISIONS IS ALSO PRESENTED. THE COMMITTEE DOES NOT ANTICIPATE ANY COST INCREASES OR IMPACT ON PERSONAL PRIVACY OF AFFECTED INDIVIDUALS AS A RESULT OF THE BILL. THE APPENDIXES CONTAIN COMMENTS FROM THE JUSTICE DEPARTMENT AND THE CONGRESSIONAL BUDGET OFFICE, A MEMO FROM THE AMERICAN LAW DIVISION OF THE CONGRESSIONAL RESEARCH SERVICE, AND OPPOSING VIEWS OF FOUR SENATORS. (MJM)
Index Term(s): Civil rights; Constitutional Rights/Civil Liberties; Legislation; Mental defectives; Mentally ill offenders; Prisoner's rights; Psychopaths; Rights of minors; United States of America
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http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=67424

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