Prisons

chklt_prison_100: Prisons

The population in American prisons and jails has tripled in the past 15 years with the predictable consequence that facilities are overcrowded; medical systems are overwhelmed; work, education, and treatment programs are inadequate; and idleness and stress lead to greater levels of violence. We have fought and continue to fight these conditions through successful litigation on behalf of prisoners.

Legal Cases

  • C-Pod Inmates of Middlesex County v. Middlesex County
    This lawsuit challenged solitary confinement practices at the Middlesex County Jail in “C-Pod”, a unit specifically for solitary confinement.
  • P.D. v. Middlesex County
    The ACLU-NJ represents P.D., a pretrial detainee with mental illness who, after being unable to make bail, was held in solitary confinement for more than four months.
  • Colon v. Passaic County
    Ongoing monitoring of settlement agreement with Passaic County requiring remedies for unsafe conditions at the Passaic County Jail.
  • Adam X v. New Jersey Department of Corrections and Department of Education
    Challenge to DOC for failing to provide appropriate education to students with special education needs in violation of IDEA.
  • State v. Mosley
    Amicus brief in challenge to the probation revocation process in New Jersey.
  • State v. Dickerson
    Amicus brief challenge to the proper scope of pretrial detention discovery.
  • Securus v. Christie
    Amicus brief in support of a motion to dismiss a challenge brought by one phone vendor, Securus, to a state law that caps phone rates in correctional facilities and prohibits facility commissions from vendors.
  • Holland et al. v. Rosen et al.
    Amicus brief, joined by the National ACLU and other civil rights group, in challenge to a federal lawsuit challenging bail reform.
  • Bornstein v. County of Monmouth
    County jail requests to seal court record of video footage of the last hours of an inmate’s life.
  • State v. Steele
    New Jersey’s current system of pre-trial detention and release unfairly penalizes poor defendants

Legislative Efforts

  • Marijuana Legalization
    Legalizes possession and personal use of small amounts of Marijuana for persons age 21 and over.
  • Medical Parole Expansion
    Expands eligibility of medical parole to prisoners determined to be permanently incapable for performing basic daily functions of life and in need of 24-hour medical attention; creates presumption of release; requires medical parolees be provided assistance in applying for Medicaid upon release; requires Parole board to collect data on medical parole grants and denials.
  • Comprehensive Juvenile Justice Reform
    Raises the minimum age for waivers from 14 to 15; eliminates some less serious crimes from the list of offenses subject to waiver; creates presumption that waived juveniles remain housed with juveniles until age 21; provides right to counsel and enhances due process protections before juveniles can be transferred from juvenile detention centers to adult prisons; eliminates use of solitary confinement except to protect health, safety, or the operation of a facility; mandates data collection and public reporting regarding the use of waiver and solitary confinement.
  • Ending Prison-Based Gerrymandering
    Requires that the incarcerated persons be counted at their last known address before prison for political redistricting purposes, not the location where they are confined.

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