United States District Court, M.D. Alabama, Northern Division
PHASE 2A INVOLUNTARY MEDICATION CONSENT
H. THOMPSON UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
matter having come before the court on the Joint Motion for
Approval of the Parties' Settlement Agreement and Entry
of Stipulated Order; the court having ordered the provision
of adequate notice to members of the plaintiff class of the
terms of this order, having received and considered the
written objections from members of the plaintiff class
related to the contents of this order, having held a fairness
hearing on August 23, 2017, having reviewed the filings,
documents, orders and/or admissible evidence which are
currently filed of record with the court, and having
considered the arguments of counsel for the parties and the
other premises herein; and for the reasons to be set forth in
a separate opinion, it is ORDERED, ADJUDGED, and DECREED as
Notice Pursuant to Rule 23(e)(1).
notice of the proposed settlement was provided to the
plaintiff class in the manner directed by the court by
separate order. Members of the plaintiff class were then
afforded an opportunity to submit comments and objections to
the court concerning the proposed settlement. A fairness
hearing pursuant to Fed.R.Civ.P. 23(e)(2) was held on August
23, 2017, at which the court heard arguments and testimony.
Rule 23(e)(2) Findings.
court, having considered the arguments and testimony at the
hearing, the comments submitted by class members, and the
entire record in this case, concludes that the settlement is
fair, reasonable, and adequate.
Revised Involuntary Medication Policy.
to the terms and conditions of this order and the process
identified herein, the Alabama Department of Corrections
("ADOC") will implement a revised policy and
practice regarding the involuntary medication of inmates with
mental illnesses. The court finds the revisions in the
applicable Administrative Regulation (“AR”) No.
621, if fully implemented, extend no further than necessary
to resolve the violations of federal due process rights
alleged by Quang Bui, the Alabama Disabilities Advocacy
Program (“ADAP”), and the plaintiff class in the
third cause of action in the fifth amended complaint,
including, but not limited to, plaintiffs' allegations
a. The ADOC failed to afford due process to those inmates who
were subject to involuntary medication proceedings while in
ADOC custody. (See Fifth Amended Complaint (doc. no.
b. The ADOC's prior involuntary medication process
“f[e]ll far short of what due process requires”
(doc. no. 805, ¶ 4);
c. The ADOC and its mental health vendor allegedly maintained
a “policy and practice of medicating mentally ill
prisoners against their will without providing due process to
determine whether the individuals can be forced to take
medication” (doc. no. 805, ¶ 190);
d. “The widespread and pervasive practice is that many
prisoners in ADOC custody are denied due process” (doc.
no. 805, ¶ 453);
e. The ADOC allegedly violated the “due process rights
[of prisoners in its custody] by involuntarily medicating
prisoners in violation of the Fourteenth Amendment to the
U.S. Constitution” (doc. no. 805, ¶ 453);
f. The ADOC's involuntary medication process failed to
include the necessary due process protections found to be
constitutional in Washington v. Harper, 494 U.S. 210
(1999) (doc. no. 888, at 162-163); and
g. “Plaintiffs Bui, Hartley, Dillard, Terrell, and
McCoy's due process rights have been violated by
Defendants' policies and practices of providing either
constitutionally inadequate due process or no process at all
with regard to involuntary medication” (doc. no. 888,
and correct copy of the revised Involuntary Medication
policy, AR 621, is attached as Exhibit 1 hereto.
Dismissal of Bui's Involuntary Medication Claim.
to the provision in the parties' settlement agreement
(doc. no. 1248-1) for the dismissal with prejudice of any and
all claims asserted by Bui regarding the involuntary
medication policies ...