What Are an Inmate’s Rights While in Prison?

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With the recent headlines of police misconduct and brutality all over the news, many questions have been raised concerning the rights of inmates in prison. Even though entering jail does curtail some rights, that does not mean inmates are without human rights. In fact, there have been laws passed in the U.S. Constitution in order to protect inmates rights while in jail. If you or someone you know is going to jail, it is important to fully understand your inmates’ rights in order to be on the look out for potential prison misconduct.

Inmates rights

Cruel and Unusual Punishment

The Eighth Amendment states that every inmate has the right to be free from inhumane treatment while in jail. The Supreme Court has upheld that this includes drawing and quartering, disembowelment, beheading, public dissection, and burning alive.

Sexual harassment and sex crimes

This applies to excessive force put upon you by either another inmate or a member of the prison staff. These acts are taken incredibly seriously in the court system and can carry both civil and criminal sections against those who perform them.

The right to complain about the prison’s conditions and access to the courts

As an inmate, you have the right to voice your concern about your living conditions. You are entitled to a clean, livable space, and if it is not up to standard, any prisoner has the right to make their voice heard. This also includes access to the courts, so if for example your requests are being denied by prison guards, you have the right to enter the court system and speak to a judge.

Medical and mental health care

Prisoners are entitled to receive the same medical and mental health treatment that has been prescribed to them by a doctor. However, the court must deem your treatments reasonable, so if you are on elective medications, then you may not be able to continue.

If you believe that your rights have been violated while in prison, it is important that you contact a prison abuse attorney as soon as possible. These civil rights lawyers specialize in personal injury law and are there to help protect you and to fight for your rights. Hiring a prison abuse attorney will also prevent you from going to court once again, as a full 96% of all personal injury cases are settled pretrial.

Have any questions? Contact our professionals at Gaskins Bennett today.