Maricopa Country Sheriff Joe Arpaio (yup he’s still around) was trying to not fix the inhumane conditions inside the jails within his jurisdiction as ordered by a lower court’s ruling. The court ruled that jails in Maricopa County do not meet constitutional minimums when it comes to food quality and housing conditions for inmates on psychotropic drugs. Yesterday, The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals rejected Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s appeal of the 2008 U.S. District Court Judge Neil V. Wake’s decision.
Now Arpaio must end severe overcrowding and ensure all detainees receive necessary medical and mental health care, be given uninterrupted access to all medications prescribed by correctional medical staff, be given access to exercise and to sinks, toilets, toilet paper and soap and be served food that meets or exceeds the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s dietary guidelines. Basically, the judge ordered that yes Sheriff Joe, the incarcerated are humans and need to be treated as such.
The ACLU proved at the 2008 trial that the sheriff routinely abused pre-trial detainees at Maricopa County Jail by feeding them moldy bread, rotten fruit and other contaminated food, housing them in cells so hot as to endanger their health, denying them care for serious medical and mental health needs and keeping them packed as tightly as sardines in holding cells for days at a time during intake.
Image Via / SPLC