Case: Waters v. Woodford

06-451449 | California state trial court

Filed Date: April 19, 2006

Clearinghouse coding complete

Case Summary

On April 19, 2006, a taxpayer filed a complaint in the San Francisco County, California, Superior Court naming, as defendants, the members of the Correctional Standards Authority ("CSA") of the California Department of Correction and Rehabilitation. Plaintiff sought declaratory relief and to enjoin expenditure of public funds for alleged illegal conduct, in that the CSA allegedly failed to perform its statutory duty to inspect county juvenile halls and a camps and to declare unsuitable for the…

On April 19, 2006, a taxpayer filed a complaint in the San Francisco County, California, Superior Court naming, as defendants, the members of the Correctional Standards Authority ("CSA") of the California Department of Correction and Rehabilitation. Plaintiff sought declaratory relief and to enjoin expenditure of public funds for alleged illegal conduct, in that the CSA allegedly failed to perform its statutory duty to inspect county juvenile halls and a camps and to declare unsuitable for the confinement of minors those facilities which are overcrowded, unsafe or otherwise fail to meet state-mandated standards. Plaintiff had private counsel, including attorneys from a large firm and from the Prison Law Office, both of whom were also involved as plaintiffs' counsel in similar California cases, Farrell v. Harper, Hixon v. Hope, and Porter v. Speirs (cases JI-CA-13, JI-CA-14 and JI-CA-15, respectively, in this database).

The complaint alleged that the CSA "utterly fails" to fulfill its' statutory duties. While acknowledging that the CSA sometimes identifies conditions that violate state minimum standards, the complaint alleged that the CSA did not take steps required by law following the identification of deficiencies, such as notifying counties that they are in violation, requiring a facility to develop and file a Corrective Action Plan to remedy the violation(s), and issuing findings that a county facility is "unsuitable for the confinement of minors." The complaint alleged that overcrowding at juvenile facilities often resulted not in an unsuitability finding but, instead, in the filing of a "Suitability Plan" which merely raised the population capacity for the facility without any physical changes occurring. Substandard conditions set out in the complaint included those allegedly existing at Los Angeles, Alameda, Fresno, Sacramento, San Diego, San Joaquin, Tulare, and Santa Barbara counties' juvenile facilities. The complaint noted that the U.S. Department of Justice and the presiding judge of the Los Angeles County Juvenile Court had examined juvenile facilities in that county in recent years and noted substantial violations in the county's juvenile facilities, and yet the CSA did not act upon those findings, permitting the deficient conditions to continue.

Numerous categories in which the counties' juvenile halls and camps, as operated, allegedly failed to meet state statutory standards included inadequate physical safety; filthy and overcrowded living conditions far from statutorily-mandated "homelike conditions;" lack of educational and rehabilitative programs; inadequate medical and mental health care; and lack of accommodations for those with physical or mental disabilities. Citing numerous provisions of the state's constitution and statutes, the plaintiff sought declaratory and injunctive relief, attorneys' fees and costs, and for the court to retain jurisdiction over the case until it found sufficient compliance by the defendants with remedial orders plaintiff sought.

We have no further information about activity in the case, other than a docket sheet indication that the case was assigned to Judge Arlene T. Borick; however, a June 2007, legislative proposal (S.B. 518) in the California Assembly to create a youth bill of rights for juveniles within state prisons or juvenile facilities mentions that serious allegations of substandard conditions for juvenile wards have been made in several pending cases, including this one. A copy of a legislative analysis of the proposed bill is in this database, filed with case JI-CA-15.

Summary Authors

Mike Fagan (5/20/2008)

People


Judge(s)

Borick, Arlene T. (California)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Agarwal, Monty (California)

Chavez, Mark A. (California)

Dupree, Renee (California)

Farzan , Farschad (California)

George, Warren E. Jr. (California)

Keith, Traci M. (California)

Lee, Belinda S. (California)

Norgaard, Vibeke (California)

Norman, Sara Linda (California)

Judge(s)

Borick, Arlene T. (California)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Agarwal, Monty (California)

Chavez, Mark A. (California)

Dupree, Renee (California)

Farzan , Farschad (California)

George, Warren E. Jr. (California)

Keith, Traci M. (California)

Lee, Belinda S. (California)

Norgaard, Vibeke (California)

Norman, Sara Linda (California)

Palamountain, Kathryn C. (California)

Park, Ju Y. (California)

Specter, Donald H. (California)

Ulmer, Richard Jr. (California)

Wang, Philip J. (California)

Documents in the Clearinghouse

Document

06-451449

Docket

April 19, 2006

April 19, 2006

Docket

06-451449

Complaint for Injunctive and Declaratory Relief

Sept. 22, 2006

Sept. 22, 2006

Complaint

Docket

Last updated Aug. 24, 2022, 3:01 a.m.

Docket sheet not available via the Clearinghouse.

Case Details

State / Territory: California

Case Type(s):

Juvenile Institution

Key Dates

Filing Date: April 19, 2006

Case Ongoing: Unknown

Plaintiffs

Plaintiff Description:

Taxpayers who bring this action to enjoin expenditure of funds to promulgate, administer, and enforce the CSA's illegal policies, practices, and procedures

Plaintiff Type(s):

Private Plaintiff

Attorney Organizations:

Prison Law Office

Public Interest Lawyer: No

Filed Pro Se: No

Class Action Sought: No

Class Action Outcome: Not sought

Defendants

Corrections Standards Authority, State

Case Details

Causes of Action:

State law

Availably Documents:

Trial Court Docket

Complaint (any)

Outcome

Prevailing Party: Unknown

Nature of Relief:

Unknown

Source of Relief:

Unknown

Issues

General:

Bathing and hygiene

Education

Food service / nutrition / hydration

Phone

Recreation / Exercise

Rehabilitation

Sanitation / living conditions

Suicide prevention

Totality of conditions

Crowding:

Crowding / caseload

Affected Gender:

Female

Male

Medical/Mental Health:

Medical care, general

Mental health care, general

Type of Facility:

Government-run