Horrible Jail Conditions Perpetuated by Violation of Los Angeles County Court Orders, Charges ACLU

Photo: FG/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images/Getty Images

By Destiny Gurrola

LOS ANGELES, CA – The Los Angeles County Jail’s Inmate Reception Center (IRC) is “massively out of compliance” with court orders to fix inhumane conditions, especially for those with mental health needs, according to the American Civil Liberties Union.

A motion for the County Board of Supervisors and Sheriff to be found in contempt by imposing sanctions is being filed by the ACLU and ACLU Foundation of Southern California.

Deputy Director of the ACLU National Prison Project, Corene Kendrick stated, “Make no mistake: LA County has failed to comply with past orders about the jails, and the ACLU’s request for contempt is how the federal court can bring the county into line and protect the people locked in its jails.”

The U.S District Court for the Southern District of California in Los Angeles filing alleges, “After almost five decades of an endless cycle of promises followed by excuses and failures and generations of class members enduring abysmal conditions… the time for talk is over.”

According to the September court order, the ACLU said the filing details that people were not supposed to be held for more than 24 hours or handcuffed to an object for more than four hours. It is also required in the IRC that there is access to functioning toilets, drinking water, clean washing water, mattresses and mental health care.

The ACLU maintains all of the said requirements were violated to the point that people
continued to “suffer serious derivations while in appalling conditions.”

The ACLU argued, despite the success of proven programs to divert people with mental illnesses out of jail and into community treatment, to reduce overcrowding, it has largely failed.

According to Peter Eliasburg, Chief Council ACLU SoCal, “For years, the county and Board of Supervisors have known about these inhumane conditions and that the only solution was to expand effective programs to move people with mental illness out of the jails into community treatment…they have failed to do what was necessary to solve the problem, and scores of vulnerable people are suffering every day because of their inaction.” 

March 20 is the next hearing for this case.

About The Author

The Vanguard Court Watch operates in Yolo, Sacramento and Sacramento Counties with a mission to monitor and report on court cases. Anyone interested in interning at the Courthouse or volunteering to monitor cases should contact the Vanguard at info(at)davisvanguard(dot)org - please email info(at)davisvanguard(dot)org if you find inaccuracies in this report.

Related posts

Leave a Reply

X Close

Newsletter Sign-Up

X Close

Monthly Subscriber Sign-Up

Enter the maximum amount you want to pay each month
Sign up for