Prison oversight to continue

Governor’s request to end federal oversight of prison health system rejected

On April 5, a federal judge denied Gov. Jerry Brown’s request in January to end federal oversight of California’s prison health-care system.

U.S. District Judge Lawrence Karlton said in a 68-page decision that “ongoing constitutional violations remain” in the state’s prison health-care system, including a failure to act on the recommendation of the court’s special master to adopt suicide-prevention methods, according to the Los Angeles Times.

Karlton also cited several further examples of “deliberate indifference” to mental-health issues in prisons: increasing inmate suicide rates, shortages of mental-health workers, and inadequate treatment facilities.

Meanwhile, the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation said it will appeal the decision. Deborah Hoffman, a department spokeswoman, said it’s time for the “costly and intrusive” oversight to end, which has been in place since a federal judge’s 2006 mandate.