In June of 2015 in Franklin County, Florida, two correctional officers at the Franklin Correctional Institute were indicted by a federal grand jury on charges that they beat an inmate and violated his civil rights. According to a news release from the U.S. Department of Justice the correctional officers, “conspired to violate the civil rights of a state inmate and deprived him of constitutional rights.”
A jail or prison’s goal is to curtail the rights of an inmate, but inmates in the United States are not stripped of their most basic human rights. This applies to the most hardened of criminals. The U.S. Constitution protects inmates’ rights and if you are someone that is facing incarceration, or if you have a friend or loved one that is doing time and is being abused, you need to know your rights and the rights of the person you know.
What rights do inmates have?
- Inhuman Conditions and Cruel and Unusual Punishment – This right comes from the Eight Amendment and protects the inmate from drawing and quartering, emboweling alive, beheading, public dissecting, burning alive, or anything determined inhumane or cruel and unusual. While that list may seem antiquated the concept is what is important. Punishments or conditions that are considered inhumane are a violation of an inmate’s rights.
- Sexual misconduct and harassment – Inmates are protected from sexual crimes whether a guard or another inmate commits them. This includes sexual harassment.
- Voice concerns – If treatment or conditions are not up to standard inmates have the right to voice their concerns. They also have a right to access courts to air their complaints.
- Disabled programs – Under the Americans with Disabilities Act, prisoners with disabilities have the right to access prison programs and facilities that they are qualified to participate in.
- Mental health programs – Inmates that are in need of mental health treatment are entitled to receive such treatment that is adequate and appropriate for their circumstances.
Contact the Philadelphia Civil Rights Lawyers at the Law Offices of Patrick G. Geckle, LLC Today
This is just a short list of the rights inmates are entitled to. If you have further questions or are in need of experienced legal advice or representation, please don’t hesitate, call our Philadelphia civil rights attorneys at (215) 735-3326 or contact the offices of Patrick G. Geckle, LLC via our online contact form.