Judge Issues Order of Contempt Against IDOC After Department Ignored Court Orders, Failed to Improved Health Care

Judge Issues Order of Contempt Against IDOC After Department Ignored Court Orders, Failed to Improved Health Care

(UPLC) – A federal court judge issued an order of contempt against the Illinois Department of Corrections (IDOC) after the Department repeatedly ignored court orders and failed to take appropriate steps to improve health care in the State’s prison system.

Specifically, the court acted after repeated failures by IDOC since 2018 to develop a specific, detailed plan needed to implement and remedy problems in the prison health care system that court experts identified multiple times.

Prisoners first sued IDOC in 2010, alleging systemic problems in health care, problems that lead to serious disease, harm and even death for people under the care of IDOC.

The lawsuit, brought by named prisoners represented by the ACLU of Illinois, Dentons, and Uptown People’s Law Center resulted in an agreement with the State of Illinois in 2018, approved by the court in May 2019.

The agreement required IDOC to develop a comprehensive plan to improve medical care. For more than three years, the Department has failed to take that step, leading the court to enforce the contempt order.