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Case Name Disability Rights California v. County of Alameda DR-CA-0061
Docket / Court 3:20-cv-05256 ( N.D. Cal. )
Additional Docket(s) 5:20-cv-05256  [ 20-5256 ]  Northern District of CA (U.S.)
State/Territory California
Case Type(s) Disability Rights-Pub. Accom.
Public Benefits / Government Services
Special Collection Olmstead Cases
Attorney Organization NDRN/Protection & Advocacy Organizations
Case Summary
This case was brought by Disability Rights California (“DRC”), a nonprofit corporation, to challenge the systemic institutionalization and segregation of Alameda County residents with serious mental health disabilities. On July 30, 2020, DRC filed this lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the ... read more >
This case was brought by Disability Rights California (“DRC”), a nonprofit corporation, to challenge the systemic institutionalization and segregation of Alameda County residents with serious mental health disabilities. On July 30, 2020, DRC filed this lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California and named the County of Alameda (“the County”), Alameda Health System, and Alameda County Behavioral Health Care Services (“County Behavioral Health”) as defendants. DRC brought the suit under the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, or 42 U.S.C. §§ 12111 et seq. DRC sought declaratory and injunctive relief, as well as attorney’s fees, alleging that the defendants had violated the ADA, as well as section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (28 U.S.C. § 794 et seq.) and sections 11135-11139 of the California Government Code, by detaining mentally disabled individuals for longer than needed and failing to provide them proper treatment and services.

On October 13, 2020, Alameda Health System filed a motion to dismiss and a motion to strike the complaint. It argued that DRC lacked standing because DRC’s complaint depended on the County creating community-based mental health services, a future event that may never occur. The County and County Behavioral Health filed similar motions shortly thereafter.

On January 21, 2021, Judge Charles R. Breyer issued an order granting the defendants’ motions to dismiss with leave to amend, finding that DRC had failed to plausibly allege disability discrimination under the relevant statutes. Specifically, Judge Breyer found that the claims against the Health System failed because they centered on the failure to provide services rather than the setting. And Judge Breyer found that the claims against the County failed because the plaintiffs had not identified specific programs being provided in institutionalized settings that could be provided elsewhere. 2021 WL 212900. Judge Breyer also found that DRC had standing with respect to all defendants because DRC adequately pleaded an injury suffered by its constituents that could be traced to the defendants’ conduct. DRC has alleged that its Constituents have been unnecessarily institutionalized and continue to face a risk of unnecessary institutionalization as a result of Defendants’ practices and lack of services; and, DRC showed that this injury could be redressed by a favorable decision. Id.

DRC submitted an amended complaint on February 23, 2021.

Anjali Baliga - 03/04/2021


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Defendant-type
Hospital/Health Department
Disability
Integrated setting
Least restrictive environment
Mental impairment
Discrimination-basis
Disability (inc. reasonable accommodations)
General
Classification / placement
Commitment procedure
Deinstitutionalization/decarceration
Disparate Impact
Disparate Treatment
Improper treatment of mentally ill suspects
Placement in mental health facilities
Rehabilitation
Medical/Mental Health
Mental health care, general
Mental Disability
Depression
Mental Illness, Unspecified
Plaintiff Type
Non-profit NON-religious organization
Causes of Action Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), 42 U.S.C. §§ 12111 et seq.
Protection and Advocacy for Individuals with Mental Illness (PAIMI) Act, 42 U.S.C. § 10801
Section 504 (Rehabilitation Act), 29 U.S.C. § 701
Defendant(s) Alameda County
Alameda Health System
Plaintiff Description A nonprofit organization, appointed by California, to protect the rights and interests of California residents with mental illness.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations NDRN/Protection & Advocacy Organizations
Class action status sought No
Class action status granted Not sought
Filed Pro Se No
Prevailing Party None Yet / None
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief None yet
Source of Relief None yet
Filed 07/30/2020
Case Ongoing Yes
Additional Resources
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  See this case at CourtListener.com (May provide additional documents and, for active cases, real-time alerts)
Court Docket(s)
N.D. Cal.
03/04/2021
3:20-cv-05256
DR-CA-0061-9000.pdf | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
N.D. Cal.
07/30/2020
Complaint for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief [ECF# 1]
DR-CA-0061-0001.pdf | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
N.D. Cal.
10/13/2020
Defendant Alameda Health System's Notice of Motion and Motion to Dismiss Plaintiff's Complaint and Motion to Strike; Memorandum of Points and Authorities in Support [ECF# 17 & 17-1 & 17-2 & 17-3]
DR-CA-0061-0003.pdf | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
N.D. Cal.
01/21/2021
Order Granting Motions to Dismiss and Denying Motion to Strike [ECF# 50] (2021 WL 212900)
DR-CA-0061-0002.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
N.D. Cal.
02/22/2021
First Amended Complaint for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief [ECF# 52]
DR-CA-0061-0004.pdf | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
show all people docs
Judges Breyer, Charles R. (N.D. Cal.) show/hide docs
DR-CA-0061-0002 | DR-CA-0061-9000
Spero, Joseph C. (N.D. Cal.) [Magistrate] show/hide docs
DR-CA-0061-9000
Plaintiff's Lawyers Bossing, Lewis (District of Columbia) show/hide docs
DR-CA-0061-0001 | DR-CA-0061-0004 | DR-CA-0061-9000
Burnim, Ira Abraham (District of Columbia) show/hide docs
DR-CA-0061-0001 | DR-CA-0061-0004 | DR-CA-0061-9000
Center, Claudia B. (California) show/hide docs
DR-CA-0061-0001 | DR-CA-0061-0004 | DR-CA-0061-9000
Dardarian, Linda M. (California) show/hide docs
DR-CA-0061-0001 | DR-CA-0061-0004 | DR-CA-0061-9000
Fischer, Aaron Joseph (California) show/hide docs
DR-CA-0061-0001 | DR-CA-0061-0004 | DR-CA-0061-9000
Gregory, Sarah J (California) show/hide docs
DR-CA-0061-0001 | DR-CA-0061-0004 | DR-CA-0061-9000
Jain, Samuel K (California) show/hide docs
DR-CA-0061-0001 | DR-CA-0061-0004 | DR-CA-0061-9000
Lee, Andrew Paul (California) show/hide docs
DR-CA-0061-0001 | DR-CA-0061-0004 | DR-CA-0061-9000
Mathis, Jennifer (District of Columbia) show/hide docs
DR-CA-0061-0001 | DR-CA-0061-0004 | DR-CA-0061-9000
Pickern, Sydney Rae (California) show/hide docs
DR-CA-0061-0001 | DR-CA-0061-0004 | DR-CA-0061-9000
Stark, Jennifer Lori (California) show/hide docs
DR-CA-0061-0001 | DR-CA-0061-0004 | DR-CA-0061-9000
Swain, Kimberly C. (California) show/hide docs
DR-CA-0061-0001 | DR-CA-0061-0004 | DR-CA-0061-9000
Wendell, Raymond Alexander (California) show/hide docs
DR-CA-0061-0001 | DR-CA-0061-0004 | DR-CA-0061-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Franklin, Kurt A. (California) show/hide docs
DR-CA-0061-0003 | DR-CA-0061-9000
Kearney, Jordan Richea Clark (California) show/hide docs
DR-CA-0061-9000
Kollar, Linda Randlett (California) show/hide docs
DR-CA-0061-9000
Lara, Raymond S (California) show/hide docs
DR-CA-0061-9000
Pagonis, Katrina Angela (California) show/hide docs
DR-CA-0061-9000
Trembly, Gymmel Monserrat (California) show/hide docs
DR-CA-0061-0003 | DR-CA-0061-9000

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