A Growing Number of Personal Injury Cases Linked to NY Correctional Facilities

A Growing Number of Personal Injury Cases Linked to NY Correctional Facilities

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Personal injury law practice

When we think of personal injury claims, it?s usually the typical filings that spring to mind — injuries as the result of car accidents, slip and fall accidents, et cetera. What many people may not be thinking about is what happens in correctional facilities — yet a recent report by The New York Times indicates it?s a growing problem.

A Surge in Violence at New York Correctional Facilities

According to city comptroller Scott M. Stringer, there?s been a surge in personal injury claims filed against New York City for incidents taking place at the Rikers Island jail complex, as well as several other city facilities. In most situations, the claims were the result of violent scuffles between inmates and other inmates, or inmates and guards.

?The claims don?t lie,? Stringer explained to The New York Times. According to Stringer, the city paid out an incredible $13.1 million in settlements and judgements in 2015 for personal injury cases. Several of these cases weren?t just about injuries — they involved actual deaths of inmates at Rikers. While some of the cases are simply the usual — slip and fall accidents that could be prevented with better care — others are definitely, at their root, the result of violence and something the city should be working harder to prevent. Stringer’s office calculated that there was a 46% increase in injury claims of prisoners against guards, and a 27% increase in claims regarding force used by guards against inmates.

Often Difficult for Inmates to Gain Public Sympathy for This Plight

It?s not surprising that the inmate population doesn?t always stir up sympathy or support. People enter correctional facilities for a variety of reasons, though, and the stripping of their freedom is the price they are supposed to pay — not dying or getting badly injured in custody. Not to mention that personal injury cases against the state ultimately cost everyone money in taxes that could be spent on things like inmate rehabilitation, or education. On top of this, inmates don’t have the resources other people tend to have — even getting in touch with a personal injury lawyer to consult on a case like this is an extra step, and one that has to be taken without having Google search results on their phone.

According to Monica Klein, a spokeswoman for the mayor, the city is not being inattentive to this problem and is taking ?aggressive steps to keep our inmates and officers safe.?

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