Lawsuit by deaf prisoners granted class-action status
Judge Marvin E. Aspen recently ruled that a complaint filed by several deaf and hard of hearing inmates may proceed after being granted class-action status. The plaintiffs are stating that the Illinois Department of Corrections are not providing them with enough reasonable forms of accommodation, including interpreters or other techniques to communicate.
Some of the services that the plaintiffs feel robbed of is health care, television, religious practices, and many more. It’s currently being investigated whether the IDOC has strong enough policies and are enforcing them correctly. The case is being filed by Winston & Strawn LLP, who are offering their services at no charge.
A class-action lawsuit is what allows one plaintiff to move to court and represent a group, allowing everyone to be represented without having to be present: which would be difficult in a case like this. The case is known as Holmes V. Godinez, No. 11 C 2961 and will be heard in the Northern District of Illinois.
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