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April 30, 2010

Interesting split Eleventh Circuit ruling on whether ADA applies to a private prison

Because I am not an expert on the American with Disabilities Act, I cannot readily assess the merits of the split ruling by the Eleventh Circuit today in Edison v. Douberly, No. 08-15819 (11th Cir. 2010) (available here).  But the majority's holding and the forceful dissent have me thinking the case implicates not just the procese issue of whether just the ADA applies to a private prison, but also whether and how private prison operators can be sued by the prisoners they manage.  Moreover, this concluding sentiment by the dissent cannot help but invoke a little sympathy for the losing litigant here:
In light of the fact that Edison is legally blind, his case raises novel issues of law, and he did not benefit from the assistance of counsel during the district court proceedings, the case should be remanded with the opportunity for Edison to amend his complaint. Leaving the majority’s holding on the ADA aside, it is an injustice to leave a blind, incarcerated litigant without any legal recourse in this complex litigation because his request for counsel was wrongfully denied during the district court proceedings.

April 30, 2010 at 01:54 PM | Permalink

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Comments

" 'The private hospital in Green was not such a governmental unit, the court
concluded. Nor was it created by a governmental entity. Instead, “it is a parallel
private entity.” '

I laughed so hard I cried. That's beautiful, so so beautiful. Since the State kills, the next time I defend a murderer I will simply describe him as a parallel private entity. Since the State taxes, the next time I meet a robber I'll know it's just a parallel private entity. The next time I see a hanging posse hell bent on vigilantism I'll know it's just another one of the government's parallel private entities. And should I take a mistress I'll just tell my wife she needn't worry as the other woman is just a parallel private entity.

Posted by: Daniel | Apr 30, 2010 3:47:14 PM

Given Judge Barkett's dissent focus upon state "function," why isn't plaintiff a third party beneficiary of the contract between GEO and correctional agency?

Posted by: benson weintraub | May 1, 2010 10:53:36 AM

Private prisons. Jesus!

Posted by: John K | May 1, 2010 12:28:21 PM

The private hospital in Green was not such a governmental unit, the court
concluded. Nor was it created by a governmental entity. Instead, “it is a parallel
private entity.

Posted by: thomas sabo | Aug 19, 2011 1:42:04 AM

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