Case: Disability Rights Florida v. Jones

3:18-cv-00179 | U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida

Filed Date: Jan. 30, 2018

Case Ongoing

Clearinghouse coding complete

Case Summary

On January 30, 2018, Disability Rights Florida filed this suit in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida against the Florida Department of Corrections (FDOC). The case was assigned to Judge Robert Hinkle. The plaintiff alleged that FDOC provided inadequate mental health treatment to prisoners in violation of the Eighth Amendment, Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) 42 U.S.C. §§ 12132, and the Rehabilitation Act 29 U.S.C. § 701. The plaintiff brought the suit under 42 U.S.C…

On January 30, 2018, Disability Rights Florida filed this suit in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida against the Florida Department of Corrections (FDOC). The case was assigned to Judge Robert Hinkle. The plaintiff alleged that FDOC provided inadequate mental health treatment to prisoners in violation of the Eighth Amendment, Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) 42 U.S.C. §§ 12132, and the Rehabilitation Act 29 U.S.C. § 701. The plaintiff brought the suit under 42 U.S.C § 1983, the ADA, and the Rehabilitation Act and sought declaratory and injunctive relief, in addition to attorneys' fees.

Specifically, the complaint alleged a number of constitutional and statutory violations, including a lack of individualized treatment planning, a lack of individualized treatment services, an inadequate number of hours for out-of-cell treatment and activities, inadequate treatment for patients engaging in self-injurious behavior, inappropriate psychotropic medication practices, and inadequate discharge planning. The complaint also alleged excessive use of isolation and restraint on inpatient mental health units, an inadequate punitive or disciplinary process for patients on the inpatient mental health units, limited to no coordination between medical and mental health teams for those in inpatient mental health units, and inadequate training of security and clinical staff assigned to the inpatient mental health units.

In December 2016, before this suit was filed, the plaintiff notified the defendant of its intention to file this lawsuit and sent the defendant a draft copy of the complaint and a letter suggesting that the parties engage in mediation. Beginning in January 2017, the parties engaged in pre-litigation mediation sessions with Judge Harvey E. Scheslinger in order to negotiate a resolution.

In December of 2017, after twelve months of mediation, the parties reached a final agreement. The parties agreed to remedy the constitutional violations, submit to independent monitoring, and pay attorneys' fees. In order to remedy the constitutional violations, the defendant promised to create and revise individualized treatment plans, mandate a minimum number of out-of-cell hours, appropriately treat inmates engaging in self-injurious behavior, appropriately administer psychotropic medication, and implement discharge planning. Finally, the parties agreed that Judge Schleslinger should preside over the case and enforce the settlement agreement because of his involvement with the mediation process.

On January 31, 2018, the parties filed a joint motion in which they asked the court to approve the proposed settlement agreement. After transferring the case to Judge Schlesinger, the court adopted the settlement agreement on February 7, 2018. The court retains jurisdiction over the case until December 31, 2020, or 60 days after the receipt of the final monitoring report, whichever is sooner.

In December 2019, the plaintiffs notified the defendants of their belief that the defendants were not in substantial compliance with the agreement at several prisons. The parties engaged in negotiations regarding the results of the first round of monitoring developed corrective action plans to address shortcomings identified in the first compliance assessment. But then the COVID-19 pandemic began causing several prisons to implement quarantines and interrupting the second round of monitoring under the agreement. The parties agreed to amend the settlement agreement and requested the court approve the modification in December 2020. Under the amended agreement, the court’s jurisdiction was extended until June 30, 2022. The court approved the settlement amendment on December 15, 2020. As of March 29, 2021, monitoring for compliance of the settlement agreement was ongoing.

Summary Authors

Hope Brinn (10/18/2018)

Emily Kempa (3/29/2021)

People

For PACER's information on parties and their attorneys, see: https://www.courtlistener.com/docket/6308093/parties/disability-rights-florida-inc-v-jones/


Judge(s)

Klindt, James R. (Florida)

Schlesinger, Harvey Erwin (Florida)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Boyer, David Allen (Florida)

Costello, Andrea Hope (Florida)

Jones, Christopher Michael (Florida)

Lentz, Kristen Cooley (Florida)

McDonald, Maryellen (Florida)

Renstrom, Laura Beard (Florida)

Schulz, George E. Jr. (Florida)

Sleasman, Peter P. (Florida)

Judge(s)

Klindt, James R. (Florida)

Schlesinger, Harvey Erwin (Florida)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Boyer, David Allen (Florida)

Costello, Andrea Hope (Florida)

Jones, Christopher Michael (Florida)

Lentz, Kristen Cooley (Florida)

McDonald, Maryellen (Florida)

Renstrom, Laura Beard (Florida)

Schulz, George E. Jr. (Florida)

Sleasman, Peter P. (Florida)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Burnsed, Dorothy (Florida)

Carter, Joel Steven (Florida)

Coles, Miriam R. (Florida)

Reynolds, Jay Patrick (Florida)

Steely, Kenneth S. (Florida)

Documents in the Clearinghouse

Document

Docket [PACER]

Disability Rights Florida, Inc. v. Jones

Dec. 15, 2020 Docket
1

Complaint

Disability Rights Florida, Inc. v. Jones

Jan. 30, 2018 Complaint
3

Joint Motion for Court Adoption of Settlement Agreement

Disability Rights Florida, Inc. v. Jones

Jan. 31, 2018 Pleading / Motion / Brief
3-1

Settlement Agreement

U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida

Jan. 31, 2018 Settlement Agreement
10

Settlement Agreement

Disability Rights Florida, Inc. v. Jones

Feb. 8, 2018 Settlement Agreement
27-1

Stipulated Partial Amendment of Settlement Agreement

Dec. 9, 2020 Settlement Agreement

Resources

Title Description External URL

The Caged Canary

Elizabeth Alexander

The United States has experienced an explosion in the number of people in prison, an explosion that cannot be attributed to changes in the crime rate, but rather reflects changes in public policy, pa… Dec. 1, 2008 http://scholarship.law.wm.edu/...

Docket

See docket on RECAP: https://www.courtlistener.com/docket/6308093/disability-rights-florida-inc-v-jones/

Last updated May 11, 2022, 8 p.m.

ECF Number Description Date Link
1

COMPLAINT against Florida Department of Corrections, Julie Jones (Filing fee $ 400 receipt number JAX026611) filed by Disability Rights Florida, Inc.. (Attachments: # 1 Civil Cover Sheet)(TSW) (Entered: 01/31/2018)

1 Civil Cover Sheet

View on PACER

Jan. 30, 2018 RECAP
2

NOTICE of pendency of related cases per Local Rule 1.04(d) by Disability Rights Florida, Inc. Related case(s): yes (TSW) (Entered: 01/31/2018)

Jan. 30, 2018 PACER
3

Joint MOTION for miscellaneous relief, specifically Adoption of Settlement Agreement by Court by Disability Rights Florida, Inc.. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit Settlement Agreement)(Lentz, Kristen) (Entered: 01/31/2018)

1 Exhibit Settlement Agreement

View on PACER

Jan. 31, 2018 PACER
4

ORDER transferring case to the Honorable Harvey E. Schlesinger, with his consent, for all further proceedings. Signed by Senior Judge Henry Lee Adams, Jr. on 1/31/2018. (MO) (Entered: 01/31/2018)

Jan. 31, 2018 PACER
7

Case reassigned to Senior Judge Harvey E. Schlesinger. New case number: 3:18cv179-J-20JRK. Senior Judge Henry Lee Adams, Jr no longer assigned to the case. (AET) (Entered: 02/02/2018)

Jan. 31, 2018 PACER
5

WAIVER of service returned executed on 2/1/18 by Disability Rights Florida, Inc. as to Julie Jones. (Sleasman, Peter) (Entered: 02/01/2018)

Feb. 1, 2018 PACER
6

WAIVER of service returned executed on 2/1/18 by Disability Rights Florida, Inc. as to Florida Department of Corrections. (Sleasman, Peter) (Entered: 02/01/2018)

Feb. 1, 2018 PACER
8

NOTICE of Appearance by Jay Patrick Reynolds on behalf of Julie Jones (Reynolds, Jay) (Entered: 02/07/2018)

Feb. 7, 2018 PACER
9

ORDER granting 3 Joint Motion for Court Adoption of Settlement Agreement; directing the Clerk to enter the attached Settlement Agreement as an Order of this Court; directing the Clerk to close this case; SEE ORDER FOR FURTHER DETAILS. Signed by Senior Judge Harvey E. Schlesinger on 2/7/2018. (Attachments: # 1 Settlement Agreement) (MGG) (Entered: 02/07/2018)

1 Settlement Agreement

View on PACER

Feb. 7, 2018 PACER
10

SETTLEMENT AGREEMENT signed by Maryellen McDonald for Plaintiff and Julie L. Jones for Defendant, adopted as an Order of this Court. Signed by Deputy Clerk on 2/8/2018. (TSW) (TSW). (Entered: 02/09/2018)

Feb. 8, 2018 RECAP
11

Joint MOTION for miscellaneous relief, specifically Court Entry of Stipulated HIPAA Qualified Protective Order by Disability Rights Florida, Inc.. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit Proposed Stipulated HIPAA Qualified Protective Order)(Lentz, Kristen) (Entered: 03/09/2018)

1 Exhibit Proposed Stipulated HIPAA Qualified Protective Order

View on PACER

March 9, 2018 PACER
12

Joint MOTION to modify Deadline for Submission of Monitoring Instrument by Disability Rights Florida, Inc.. (Lentz, Kristen) (Entered: 03/09/2018)

March 9, 2018 PACER
13

STIPULATED HIPAA QUALIFIED PROTECTIVE ORDER Signed by Senior Judge Harvey E. Schlesinger on 3/14/2018. (MGG) (Entered: 03/15/2018)

March 15, 2018 PACER
14

ORDER granting 12 Joint Motion for Modification of Deadline; extending deadline for submission of CMA-approved monitoring instrument (see 10 Settlement Agreement) to 7/31/2018. Signed by Magistrate Judge James R. Klindt on 3/15/2018. (KAW) (Entered: 03/15/2018)

March 15, 2018 PACER
15

Joint MOTION for settlement conference Regarding Plaintiff's Attorneys' Fees and Costs by Disability Rights Florida, Inc.. (Sleasman, Peter) (Entered: 06/18/2018)

June 18, 2018 PACER
16

ORDER granting 15 Joint Motion for Settlement Conference with Magistrate Judge Regarding Plaintiff's Attorneys' Fees and Costs; representative speaking for the parties to contact Judge Klindt's chambers with dates for the conference by 7/3/2018; see Order for details. Signed by Magistrate Judge James R. Klindt on 6/22/2018. (KAW) (Entered: 06/22/2018)

June 22, 2018 PACER
17

ORDER Setting Settlement Conference for 8/7/2018 at 10:00 AM in Jacksonville Courtroom 5 D before Magistrate Judge James R. Klindt. Plaintiff shall submit for the Court's consideration the fees and costs that were requested of Defendants and Defendants shall submit for the Court's consideration the counteroffer that they previously submitted to Plaintiff no later than 7/31/2018. Any objections to the proposed procedure due no later than 7/16/18. Confidential Memoranda due no later than 7/31/2018. Signed by Magistrate Judge James R. Klindt on 7/10/2018. SEE ORDER FOR DETAILS AND INSTRUCTIONS REGARDING SUBMISSION. (Attachments: # 1 General Order)(MDC) (Entered: 07/10/2018)

1 General Order

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July 10, 2018 PACER
18

NOTICE of Appearance by Joel Steven Carter on behalf of Florida Department of Corrections, Julie Jones (Carter, Joel) (Entered: 07/23/2018)

July 23, 2018 PACER
19

NOTICE by Disability Rights Florida, Inc. of Filing Monitoring Instruments (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit Discharge Planning Review, # 2 Exhibit Disciplinary Report Review, # 3 Exhibit Group Observation Checklist, # 4 Exhibit Inpatient Mental Health Review, # 5 Exhibit Institutional Tour, # 6 Exhibit MDST Observation Review, # 7 Exhibit Medical Records Review, # 8 Exhibit Medication Administration Observation Checklist, # 9 Exhibit Mental Health Systems, # 10 Exhibit Psychiatric Medication Practices Review, # 11 Exhibit Mental Health Restraints Review, # 12 Exhibit Security Restraint Observation Checklist, # 13 Exhibit Self-Injurious and Suicidal Behavior Review, # 14 Exhibit Suicide Isolation Room Checklist, # 15 Exhibit Treatment Refuser Review, # 16 Exhibit Mental Health Profession Interview Questions, # 17 Exhibit Nursing Interview Questions, # 18 Exhibit Patient Interview Questions, # 19 Exhibit Psychiatrist Interview Questions, # 20 Exhibit Psychologist Interview Questions, # 21 Exhibit Security Interview Questions)(Sleasman, Peter) (Entered: 07/31/2018)

1 Exhibit Discharge Planning Review

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2 Exhibit Disciplinary Report Review

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3 Exhibit Group Observation Checklist

View on PACER

4 Exhibit Inpatient Mental Health Review

View on PACER

5 Exhibit Institutional Tour

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6 Exhibit MDST Observation Review

View on PACER

7 Exhibit Medical Records Review

View on PACER

8 Exhibit Medication Administration Observation Checklist

View on PACER

9 Exhibit Mental Health Systems

View on RECAP

10 Exhibit Psychiatric Medication Practices Review

View on PACER

11 Exhibit Mental Health Restraints Review

View on PACER

12 Exhibit Security Restraint Observation Checklist

View on PACER

13 Exhibit Self-Injurious and Suicidal Behavior Review

View on PACER

14 Exhibit Suicide Isolation Room Checklist

View on PACER

15 Exhibit Treatment Refuser Review

View on PACER

16 Exhibit Mental Health Profession Interview Questions

View on PACER

17 Exhibit Nursing Interview Questions

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18 Exhibit Patient Interview Questions

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19 Exhibit Psychiatrist Interview Questions

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20 Exhibit Psychologist Interview Questions

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21 Exhibit Security Interview Questions

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July 31, 2018 PACER
20

MINUTE Entry. Proceedings held before Magistrate Judge James R. Klindt: SETTLEMENT CONFERENCE held on 8/7/2018. (DIGITAL) (MDC) (Entered: 08/08/2018)

Aug. 7, 2018 RECAP
21

NOTICE of Appearance by Gayla Grant on behalf of Florida Department of Corrections (Grant, Gayla) Modified on 1/17/2019 contacted counsel in regards to using the correct and complete case number on all pleadings (TSW). (Entered: 01/17/2019)

Jan. 17, 2019 PACER
22

NOTICE of Filing Revised Monitoring Instruments by Disability Rights Florida, Inc. (Attachments: # 1 Appendix Revised Monitoring Instruments)(Sleasman, Peter) Modified text on 2/4/2019 (KKH). (Entered: 02/01/2019)

1 Appendix Revised Monitoring Instruments

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Feb. 1, 2019 PACER
23

ORDER directing Clerk to file under seal a "Sealed Motion to Intervene" that the Court received; thereafter, the Clerk shall strike and return the motion to the filer. The electronic image shall remain part of the record. Signed by Magistrate Judge James R. Klindt on 10/14/2020. (KAW) (Entered: 10/14/2020)

Oct. 14, 2020 PACER

Sealed Document: S-24 (KEM)

Oct. 15, 2020 PACER

Sealed Document

Oct. 15, 2020 PACER
25

NOTICE of Appearance by Ian B. Carnahan on behalf of Florida Department of Corrections, Julie Jones (Carnahan, Ian) (Entered: 12/03/2020)

Dec. 3, 2020 PACER
26

NOTICE of Appearance Appearance by Alexandria Elisse Williams on behalf of Florida Department of Corrections, Julie Jones (Williams, Alexandria) (Entered: 12/04/2020)

Dec. 4, 2020 PACER
27

Joint MOTION to Modify 10 Order Joint Motion to Modify Settlement Agreement by Extending Jurisdiction by Disability Rights Florida, Inc.. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit Addendum A - Stipulated Partial Amendment of Settlement Agreement)(Sleasman, Peter) (Entered: 12/09/2020)

1 Exhibit Addendum A - Stipulated Partial Amendment of Settlement Agreement

View on RECAP

Dec. 9, 2020 PACER
28

ORDER granting 27 Joint Motion to Modify Settlement Agreement by Extending Jurisdiction; the 2017 Settlement Agreement is modified to EXTEND JURISDICTION until June 30, 2022; directing the Clerk to close this case. Signed by Senior Judge Harvey E. Schlesinger on 12/11/2020. (TPL) (Entered: 12/15/2020)

Dec. 15, 2020 PACER

State / Territory: Florida

Case Type(s):

Disability Rights/Public Accommodations

Key Dates

Filing Date: Jan. 30, 2018

Case Ongoing: Yes

Plaintiffs

Plaintiff Description:

Plaintiff, Disability Rights Florida, is a Protection & Advocacy System (P&A) mandated under the federal Individuals with Mental Illness Act to ensure that rights of individuals with mental illnesses are protected.

Plaintiff Type(s):

Non-profit NON-religious organization

Attorney Organizations:

NDRN/Protection & Advocacy Organizations

Public Interest Lawyer: Yes

Filed Pro Se: No

Class Action Sought: No

Class Action Outcome: Not sought

Defendants

Florida Department of Corrections (Tallahassee, Leon), State

Defendant Type(s):

Corrections

Case Details

Causes of Action:

42 U.S.C. § 1983

Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), 42 U.S.C. §§ 12111 et seq.

Section 504 (Rehabilitation Act), 29 U.S.C. § 701

Constitutional Clause(s):

Cruel and Unusual Punishment

Availably Documents:

Trial Court Docket

Complaint (any)

Injunctive (or Injunctive-like) Relief

Outcome

Prevailing Party: Plaintiff

Nature of Relief:

Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement

Attorneys fees

Source of Relief:

Settlement

Litigation

Form of Settlement:

Court Approved Settlement or Consent Decree

Order Duration: 2018 - 2022

Content of Injunction:

Reasonable Accommodation

Monitoring

Goals (e.g., for hiring, admissions)

Training

Issues

General:

Confinement/isolation

Discharge & termination plans

Disparate Treatment

Failure to train

Government Services

Improper treatment of mentally ill suspects

Individualized planning

Informed consent/involuntary medication

Pattern or Practice

Placement in mental health facilities

Reasonable Accommodations

Reasonable Modifications

Rehabilitation

Restraints : physical

Staff (number, training, qualifications, wages)

Discrimination-basis:

Disability (inc. reasonable accommodations)

Disability:

Mental impairment

Mental Disability:

Mental Illness, Unspecified

Medical/Mental Health:

Medication, administration of

Mental health care, general

Self-injurious behaviors

Type of Facility:

Government-run