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March 30, 2007

ACS issue brief on PLRA

The American Constitution Society has, as noted here, a new issue brief entitled "Preserving the Rule of Law in America's Prisons: The Case for Amending the Prison Litigation Reform Act. "  Available at this link, here is part of ACS's account of this new work:

In this paper, [Margo] Schlanger and [Giovanna] Shay argue that certain provisions of the PLRA undermine the rule of law by shielding corrections officials from accountability even in situations in which law violations are clear.  While the PLRA has shrunk the number of court cases initiated by prisoners and reduced the burden on prison and jail administrators as intended, the authors demonstrate that significant unintended problems also flow from this law. Schlanger and Shay contend that "constitutionally meritorious cases are faced with new and often insurmountable obstacles" and that the resulting harm is not only to the claimants in the particular cases that have been dismissed despite their merit, but to the entire system of accountability that ensures that prison and jail officials comply with constitutional mandates.

March 30, 2007 at 12:40 PM | Permalink


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