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Litigation Spotlight

DRP Completes Monitoring of Wetzel Settlement Ensuring Mental Health Treatment and the End of Solitary Confinement for PA Prisoners with Mental Illness

DRP has successfully completed its enforcement and monitoring of a settlement agreement between DRP and the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections (“DOC”) in Disability Rights Network of Pennsylvania v. Wetzel, Civ. A. No. 1:13-CV-00635 (M.D. Pa.).

The agreement established that DOC would remodel its program for prisoners with mental illness, which included broadening prisoners’ access to mental health services as well as creating mental health-focused housing for prisoners with mental illness who require more intensive treatment or diversion from programs that use solitary confinement.

Over the last three years, DRP and an independent Technical Compliance Consultant visited numerous State Correctional Institutions. During those visits, DRP met with hundreds of prisoners to discuss how the remodeling was progressing and to ensure that prisoners had access to the mental health services they required while incarcerated. DRP is happy to announce that the settlement agreement terms have been met and prisoners are benefiting from DOC’s new mental health programs.

Prisoners can continue to contact DRP with disability and mental health-related concerns.

Read the Settlement Agreement here.