Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2017-11-22
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

Judge orders a stop to segregation of Alabama HIV prisoners
From an ACLU news release
2012-12-21

facebook twitter google +1 reddit email


MONTGOMERY, Ala. — A federal judge today ordered Alabama to stop segregating prisoners living with HIV, ruling that the practice violates the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

U.S. District Court Judge Myron H. Thompson ruled in a class-action lawsuit by the American Civil Liberties Union on behalf of all Alabama prisoners with HIV that the Alabama Department of Corrections (ADOC) discriminates against the prisoners by housing them separately from all other prisoners and categorically denies them equal access to prison rehabilitative programs.

The court ruled the ADA prohibits blanket disability-based exclusions and mandates that prisoners with disabilities must be housed in the most integrated setting appropriate to the needs of the individuals. Exceptions may be made only on an individualized, case-by-case basis if the specific situation warrants different treatment.

Thompson said in his decision: "It is evident that, while the ADOC's categorical segregation policy has been an unnecessary tool for preventing the transmission of HIV, it has been an effective one for humiliating and isolating prisoners living with the disease."

"Today's decision is historic," said Margaret Winter, associate director of the ACLU National Prison Project and lead counsel for the plaintiffs. "It spells an end to a segregation policy that has inflicted needless misery on Alabama prisoners with HIV and their families."

The court issued a permanent injunction ordering Alabama to abandon its discriminatory practices, including its categorical exclusion of prisoners with HIV from work-release jobs in the food industry, from assignment to faith-based honor dorms, and from a host of other rehabilitative, educational, trade skills and vocational programs.

"Ending a policy that treated human beings like cattle to be tagged and herded is a tremendous victory for human rights," said Olivia Turner, executive director of the ACLU of Alabama, which participated in the lawsuit.

The court found that HIV-positive prisoners with serious mental health needs and substance abuse problems were wrongfully excluded even from critically important treatment programs.

The court's decision also bans Alabama's policy of requiring all male prisoners with HIV to always wear white armbands to alert others of their status, which Winter characterized as "a latter-day yellow star."

The suit, Henderson et al. v. Thomas et al., was filed last year. There are approximately 240 male and 10 female prisoners living with HIV in the Alabama prison system.

During a month-long trial that began Sept. 17 in Montgomery, the ACLU argued that Alabama's HIV policy is not based on legitimate interests in safety and is unnecessary to prevent the transmission of HIV.

Experts testified that the risk of transmitting HIV is virtually nonexistent for patients properly treated with modern HIV medications. And in surprise testimony, ADOC's associate commissioner in charge of security admitted on cross-examination that he no longer believes the HIV-segregation policy is justified.

"Alabama's policies regarding prisoners living with HIV are relics from an era of hysteria," said Amanda Goad, staff attorney with the ACLU AIDS Project. "We look forward to seeing the Department of Corrections fully implement Judge Thompson's decision and end its discriminatory practices."

The Judge's decision is at:

www.aclu.org/files/assets/dkt249_opinion._signed_by_honorable_judge_myron_h._thompson.pdf

For background on the ACLU's case, visit:

www.aclu.org/hiv-aids-prisoners-rights/henderson-et-al-v-thomas-et-al


facebook twitter google +1 reddit email




Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

Same-sex prep4love ads targeted by vandals 2017-11-19 - Posters in the prep4love advertising campaign—launched last year by the Chicago PrEP Working Group ( CPWG ), an ad-hoc coalition of advocates and ...


Gay News

THEATER REVIEW Wedding Band: A Love/Hate Story in Black and White 2017-11-15 - Playwright: Alice Childress At: The Artistic Home. 1376 W. Grand Ave. Tickets: $28-$32. Runs through: Dec. 17 The year of ...


Gay News

Faith in America, Tyler Clementi Foundation join to end religious-based bullying 2017-11-14 - New York, NY ( November 13, 2017 )—Tonight, at The Tyler Clementi Foundation's Upstander Legacy Celebration, Mitchell Gold, co-founder and co-chair of Faith ...


Gay News

UN member states maintain non-discrimination in Olympic Truce Resolution 2017-11-14 - ( New York ) Today, all 193 United Nations Member States adopted the Olympic Truce Resolution maintaining language protecting against discrimination based on ...


Gay News

HRC: New FBI hate-crimes statistics "harrowing" 2017-11-14 - New 2016 statistics released by the FBI on Nov. 13 show increases in hate-crimes against persons on the basis of gender identity and ...


Gay News

Summit tackles hate crimes and community responses 2017-10-26 - Chicago Commission on Human Relations ( CCHR ) and other community stakeholders convened the second Hate Crime Summit to address bias-based crimes against ...


Gay News

After removing trans protection, Sessions seeks credit for DoJ work on hate crime 2017-10-15 - Lambda Legal Calls out Sessions' Hypocrisy as He Touts DOJ Assistance in Iowa Hate Crimes Case "For Sessions to seek credit for ...


Gay News

National Park Service withdraws sponsorship of Stonewall rainbow flag dedication 2017-10-13 - ( NEW YORK CITY — October 10, 2017 ) — The National Park Service ( NPS ), which had originally approved and sponsored ...


Gay News

UIC to host second hate-crimes summit 2017-10-11 - Raising awareness and action against hate, the Hate Crime Coalition brings the Hate Crime Summit: Bridging Systems Against Hate to University of Illinois ...


Gay News

Egypt: Mass arrests amid LGBT media blackout, activists get death threats 2017-10-07 - ( Nairobi, October 6, 2017 ) — The Egyptian government has intensified its campaign against lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender ( LGBT ) ...


 



Copyright © 2017 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS

Sponsor


 



Sponsor

About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group produces Windy City Queercast, & publishes Windy City Times,
The Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community,
Nightspots, Out! Resource Guide, and Identity.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.