Civil Rights Impact Litigation

Civil Rights

Advocating for Louisiana Prisoners

The Promise of Justice Initiative focuses its Civil Rights Impact Litigation on the horrific prison conditions that exist in Louisiana. Louisiana spends less money per prisoner than almost all other states, and leads the entire world in incarcerating its citizens.

Dangerous Heat Conditions

PJI has litigated the dangerous heat conditions on death row at the Louisiana State Penitentiary, otherwise known as Angola. Summers in Louisiana are hot, humid, and daily reaches into the high 90’s and triple digits.
Cells on death row measured into the 100’s and bars and cell walls can get hot to the touch. PJI filed suit against the prison for its dangerous and cruel and unusual heat conditions. PJI won air conditioning relief for the plaintiff’s only to have it overturned by the 5th circuit. PJI recently settled the case, resulting in relief for the named plaintiffs.

Medical Class Action Suit

Medical care in Louisiana prisons is desperately lacking resources, funding, and staff. The majority of the physicians at the Louisiana State Penitentiary have had their medical licenses stripped. The majority of the hospital care workers are prisoners with a small amount of training, called EMTs.
PJI recently took the Louisiana State Penitentiary to trial in a class action suit to fight their abhorrent and unconstitutional medical care. Incarcerated men at the prison were ignored, accused of malingering, denied treatment, and left to languish in pain. Many treatable illnesses were ignored until chronic, untreatable, or desperate measures were required to treat them.