Prison and Jail Grievance Policies: Lessons from a Fifty-State Survey

Michigan Law Prison Information Project, 2015

36 Pages Posted: 15 Jun 2016

See all articles by Priyah Kaul

Priyah Kaul

University of Michigan Law School

Greer Donley

University of Pittsburgh - School of Law

Benjamin Cavataro

University of Michigan Law School

Anelisa Benavides

University of Michigan Law School

Jessica Kincaid

University of Michigan Law School

Joseph Chatham

University of Michigan at Ann Arbor

Date Written: October 18, 2015

Abstract

This report summarizes information gathered by analysis of prisoner grievance policies from 53 Departments of Correction (for the Federal Bureau of Prisons, each state, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico), and the nation’s 12 largest metropolitan jails. Each policy itself — obtained via the web or by Freedom of Information Act requests — is available at http://clearinghouse.net/policy. They exhibit significant variation. It is this variation that allows us to present the recommendations below. Where we observed particular grievance rules that seemed troubling — unfair, especially onerous for prisoners, etc. — and those rules are unusual, we recommend the more common practice. Other recommendations work the converse way: where some jurisdictions have unusual but very appealing rules, we highlight those as promising practices for others to follow.

Keywords: K4

Suggested Citation

Kaul, Priyah and Donley, Greer and Cavataro, Benjamin and Benavides, Anelisa and Kincaid, Jessica and Chatham, Joseph, Prison and Jail Grievance Policies: Lessons from a Fifty-State Survey (October 18, 2015). Michigan Law Prison Information Project, 2015, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2795035 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2795035

Priyah Kaul (Contact Author)

University of Michigan Law School ( email )

625 South State Street
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1215
United States

Greer Donley

University of Pittsburgh - School of Law ( email )

3900 Forbes Ave.
Pittsburgh, PA 15260
United States
412.648.1359 (Phone)
412.648.2649 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.law.pitt.edu/people/greer-donley

Benjamin Cavataro

University of Michigan Law School ( email )

625 South State Street
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1215
United States

Anelisa Benavides

University of Michigan Law School ( email )

625 South State Street
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1215
United States

Jessica Kincaid

University of Michigan Law School ( email )

625 South State Street
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1215
United States

Joseph Chatham

University of Michigan at Ann Arbor ( email )

500 S. State Street
Ann Arbor, MI 48109
United States

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