November 26, 2014
The Legal Aid Justice Center announced that it had reached a settlement in our lawsuit on behalf of women incarcerated at Fluvanna Correctional Center for Women. WileyRein and Washington Lawyers’ Committed are co-counsel for the plaintiffs in the lawsuit. The lawsuit asserted that the 1200 women incarcerated at FCCW are being provided constitutionally inadequate medical care, leaving their health and lives at serious risk. The settlement provides a framework for significant reforms of the medical care at FCCW. The settlement also outlines a process by which the parties will jointly review and revise Department of Corrections policies regarding health care. The settlement directs that the parties nominate a court-appointed monitor who will oversee the care provided at FCCW. Because the case was certified as a class action, the settlement will need to be approved by the court at a subsequent hearing.
The settlement came in the wake of two sweeping opinions in favor of the Plaintiffs from the court—an order granting class certification and an order granting Plaintiffs’ motion for summary judgment.
On November 25, 2014, the court issued an order granting Plaintiffs’ motion for summary judgment and denying the Defendants’ motion for summary judgment. In a powerful decision, the court ruled that that Department of Corrections may not delegate its constitutional obligation to provide adequate medical care by simply turning health care over to a subcontractor.
On November 20, 2014, the court issued a broad opinion granting class certification in the case, which means that any judgment in the case will apply to all 1200 women at the prison, not just the four named plaintiffs.
Nov. 20, 2014 – Memorandum Opinion Granting Class Certification