clear that the Committee, faced with conflicting evidence,
chose to believe the reporting employee. The Committee
specifically stated the two pieces of evidence on which it
relied in reaching its decision that Woodall was guilty of all
charges except insolence. We conclude that, while the
Committee's statement of reasons for its ruling is brief, it
nevertheless satisfies minimum constitutional requirements.
IV. Sanctions Imposed Upon Finding Woodall Guilty
Upon finding Woodall guilty of all charges except insolence,
the Adjustment Committee recommended placing Woodall in
segregation for 360 days, revoking 360 days good time and
demoting him to "C" grade for 360 days. Woodall alleges that
the loss of 360 days good time would have extended his
imprisonment 150 days beyond his maximum release date. Woodall
contends that the fact that the Director of the IDOC ordered
the punishment reduced to correspond to Woodall's maximum
release date "does not lessen the actions of the disciplinary
committee at the time the punishment was meted out. By
willfully extending plaintiff's incarceration 150 days beyond
his maximum incarceration date, is an obvious abuse of power."
Plaintiff's Motion in Opposition to Certain Defendants' Motion
to Dismiss at 7-8.
The Court rejects Woodall's contention that this states a
constitutional violation. Because it appears that the mistake
was rectified before he served any of the excess, he suffered
no loss of liberty. Although Woodall characterizes defendants'
extension of his release date as "willful," he provides no
facts in support thereof. Accordingly, this claim is
Woodall also suggests that the sanctions imposed were
disproportionate to the offenses of which he was found guilty.
The Court does not agree. The Adjustment Committee found
Woodall guilty of assault, sexual misconduct, intimidation and
threats, disobeying a direct order and violation of rules.
IDOC AR 804 lists chargeable offenses and the maximum
penalties that the Adjustment Committee may impose if it finds
the inmate guilty. AR 804 provides a maximum penalty of 360
days in "B" or "C" grade, 360 days revocation of good time and
360 days in segregation for each of the offenses of assault
and sexual misconduct. Lesser penalties are prescribed for the
other offenses Woodall was found to have committed. AR
804(II)(I) indicates that when an inmate is found guilty of
more than one offense arising from a single incident, the
maximum penalty shall not exceed the maximum penalty for the
most serious offense he is found to have committed. Woodall's
punishment comported with this provision. Thus, the punishment
imposed upon Woodall was within the dictates of AR 804.
Furthermore, Woodall's actions represented serious
violations of prison discipline, and we find that the
resultant punishment he received was not so disproportionate
as to be cruel and unusual. In Chapman v. Kleindienst,
507 F.2d 1246, 1252 (7th Cir. 1974), the court stated that courts
reviewing the proportionality of prison disciplinary measures
must consider the circumstances surrounding the offense, the
prisoner's disciplinary record and the offense for which he was
originally incarcerated. In the case at bar, we have before us
no allegations concerning the latter two factors. But even if
Woodall had never before been charged with a violation of
prison rules and the offense for which he was originally
imprisoned was of a minor nature, we find that the
circumstances surrounding his multiple offenses support the
conclusion that the punishment imposed was not excessive.
Woodall instigated the confrontation with Partilla and defied
her order to leave her alone. Such challenges to authority
interfere with prison operations and may threaten prison
security. Accordingly, the Court holds that Woodall's
punishment does not give rise to an Eighth Amendment violation.
See generally Madyun v. Franzen, 704 F.2d 954 (7th Cir.), cert.
denied, ___ U.S. ___, 104 S.Ct. 493, 78 L.Ed.2d 687 (1983);
Chapman v. Pickett, 586 F.2d 22 (7th Cir. 1978).
V. IDOC Review of Adjustment Committee Decision
Woodall alleges that disciplinary sanctions were imposed
upon him and upheld without affording him an appeal hearing at
the institutional level and further upheld at the department
level at a hearing held in his absence. Thus, Woodall claims
that defendants denied him minimum requirements of due
This claim is without merit. "[T]he Fourteenth Amendment
does not mandate administrative review of prison disciplinary
actions." Greer v. DeRobertis, 568 F. Supp. 1370, 1375 (N.D.Ill.
1983). See also Azeez v. DeRobertis, 568 F. Supp. 8, 10
(N.D.Ill. 1982). Accordingly, this claim is dismissed.
VI. Labor Claims
Woodall claims that defendants violated the Constitution and
state and federal laws by contracting out his labor to
Servomation for an excessive number of working hours per day
at a wage level below the minimum required by law.
Once again, we are confronted with the threshold task of
determining whether the complaint sufficiently alleges that
Servomation, a private corporation, acted under color of state
law so as to be amenable to Woodall's labor claims under §
1983. "Only by sifting facts and weighing circumstances can the
nonobvious involvement of the State in private conduct be
attributed its true significance." Burton v. Wilmington Parking
Authority, 365 U.S. 715, 722, 81 S.Ct. 856, 860, 6 L.Ed.2d 45
(1961). The focus of our analysis must be whether the state
involvement in the challenged action is "significant." Reitman
v. Mulkey, 387 U.S. 369, 380, 87 S.Ct. 1627, 1634, 18 L.Ed.2d
830 (1967). Stated otherwise, "the inquiry must be whether
there is a sufficiently close nexus between the State and the
challenged action . . . so that the action of the latter may be
fairly treated as that of the State itself." Jackson v.
Metropolitan Edison Co., 419 U.S. 345, 351, 95 S.Ct. 449, 453,
42 L.Ed.2d 477 (1974).
With these principles in mind, we consider the case at bar.
Servomation, Inc., is a private corporation contracted by the
IDOC to prepare and serve food to all inmates and staff at
Joliet Correctional Center. According to Woodall, Servomation
employs civilian food supervisors and utilizes inmate labor.
Thus, Servomation's civilian employees work within the
confines of the prison alongside of prisoners and prison
personnel. Servomation, not Joliet Correctional Center, paid
Woodall's wages. It is not unreasonable to infer that
Servomation civilian employees, in conjunction with prison
staff, directed Woodall's work. Indeed, Servomation allegedly
was partially responsible for forcing Woodall to work
excessive hours. Servomation, by allegedly compelling a
prisoner to work, exercised a typically state power. "[W]hen
private individuals or groups are endowed by the State with
powers or functions governmental in nature, they become
agencies or instrumentalities of the State and subject to its
constitutional limitations." Evans v. Newton, 382 U.S. 296,
299, 86 S.Ct. 486, 488, 15 L.Ed.2d 373 (1966).
Servomation contends that its relationship with the state
was limited to a contract to provide goods and services. The
allegations of the complaint, however, suggest a much closer
nexus. The Court notes its obligations to liberally construe
the pleadings of the pro se litigant, see Haines v. Kerner,
404 U.S. 519, 92 S.Ct. 594, 30 L.Ed.2d 652 (1972), and to view the
allegations of the complaint and all reasonable inferences
which can be drawn from them as true. See Spence v. Staras,
507 F.2d 554, 557 (7th Cir. 1974). To be sure, Woodall's
allegations do not precisely define the relationship between
Servomation and the state, and we express no opinion as to the
ultimate resolution of this issue. But, on the basis of the
pleadings before us, we cannot say with assurance that it is
beyond doubt that Woodall can prove no set of facts that would
give rise to a finding of state action.
Having decided that Woodall sufficiently alleges state
action, the Court turns
to Woodall's labor claims. First, he claims that the IDOC
contracted out his labor to Servomation contrary to
Ill.Rev.Stat. ch. 38, § 1003-12-2(a) (1981 & Supp. 1982).*fn5
Woodall quotes a partial sentence from the statute as follows:
"[a] committed person's labor shall not be sold, contracted or
hired out by the Department." He neglects to quote other
pertinent portions of § 1003-12-2(a) which provide that the
IDOC may "employ committed persons . . . for the production of
food or other necessities for its programs," and "[a] committed
person's labor shall not be sold, contracted or hired out by
the Department except under this Section." Thus, Woodall's
employment, which was incidental to the production of food for
the prison, did not violate § 1003-12-2(a). Accordingly, this
claim is dismissed.
Next, Woodall contends that defendants violated his
constitutional rights by forcing him to work 16-18 hours per
day at a low wage level. These contentions are without merit.
The Court notes initially that compelling prisoners to work
does not contravene the Thirteenth Amendment. See Draper v.
Rhay, 315 F.2d 193, 197 (9th Cir.), cert. denied, 375 U.S. 915,
84 S.Ct. 214, 11 L.Ed.2d 153 (1963). Work assignments, however,
which amount to cruel and unusual punishment are forbidden. See
Ray v. Mabry, 556 F.2d 881, 882 (8th Cir. 1977); McLaughlin v.
Royster, 346 F. Supp. 297, 311 (E.D.Va. 1972); Fidtler v.
Rundle, 316 F. Supp. 535, 536 (E.D.Pa. 1970). In Talley v.
Stephens, 247 F. Supp. 683, 687 (E.D.Ark. 1965), the court
[F]or prison officials knowingly to compel
convicts to perform physical labor which is
beyond their strength, or which constitutes a
danger to their lives or health, or which is
unduly painful constitutes an infliction of cruel
and unusual punishment prohibited by the Eighth
Amendment to the Constitution of the United
States as included in the 14th Amendment.
In the instant case, Woodall does not allege that defendants
compelled him to perform labor beyond his physical
capabilities or which endangered his health. Nor does he
allege that he suffered abusive treatment. Woodall merely
asserts that he worked an average of 16-18 hours per day. The
complaint is wholly devoid of specific allegations of extreme
hardship in his working conditions and thus fails to state a
claim under the Eighth Amendment.
Woodall's complaint that the amount of compensation he
received for his labor violated constitutional requirements is
also without merit. Prisoners have no constitutional right to
be paid for their services. See Manning v. Lockhart,
623 F.2d 536, 538 (8th Cir. 1980); Sigler v. Lowrie, 404 F.2d 659 (8th
Cir. 1968), cert. denied, 395 U.S. 940, 89 S.Ct. 2010, 23
L.Ed.2d 456 (1969); X v. Brierley, 457 F. Supp. 350 (E.D.Pa.
1978); Borror v. White, 377 F. Supp. 181 (W.D.Va. 1974).
Accordingly, the Court dismisses Woodall's claims that
defendants infringed his constitutional rights by requiring
him to work 16-18 hours per day for low pay.
Woodall next contends that he is entitled to relief with
respect to his hours and wages based on federal and state
statutes. The federal law allegedly implicated is the Fair
Labor Standards Act, 29 U.S.C. § 201 et seq. (1976 & Supp. V
1981). Speaking in terms of employer-employee relationships,
the Act is silent as to whether prison labor is covered. An
"economic reality" test is generally used to determine whether
an employer-employee relationship exists. E.g., Sims v. Parke
Davis & Co., 334 F. Supp. 774 (E.D.Mich.), aff'd, 453 F.2d 1259
(6th Cir. 1971), cert. denied, 405 U.S. 978, 92 S.Ct. 1196, 31
L.Ed.2d 254 (1972). Courts confronted with the issue have
concluded that a prisoner is not an employee within the meaning
of the Act. See Alexander v. Sara, Inc., 559 F. Supp. 42
(M.D. La.), aff'd, 721 F.2d 149 (5th Cir. 1983); Sims v. Parke
Davis & Co., 334 F. Supp.774 (E.D.Mich.),
aff'd, 453 F.2d 1259 (6th Cir. 1971), cert. denied,
405 U.S. 978, 92 S.Ct. 1196, 31 L.Ed.2d 254 (1972); Hudgins v. Hart,
323 F. Supp. 898 (E.D.La. 1971); Huntley v. Gunn Furniture Co.,
79 F. Supp. 110 (W.D.Mich. 1948). In Sims, for example, to reach
the conclusion that prisoners working in a pharmaceutical
company were, in economic reality, not employees, the court
noted several factors including (1) the fact that the company
could not hire, fire or ultimately control the prisoners, and
(2) the lack of a formal contractual relationship between the
company and the prisoners. Sims, 334 F. Supp. at 786.
The court in Worsley v. Lash, 421 F. Supp. 556 (N.D.Ind.
1976), utilized another approach to decide that a prisoner was
never "employed" by the State of Indiana as contemplated by the
Fair Labor Standards Act. The court found that the prisoner's
work was authorized by a state statute which empowered the
prison's board of trustees to pay prisoners from money received
by the institution for the labor of prisoners. According to the
court, the Fair Labor Standards Act did not convert the
prisoner's status to that of "employee." The court noted that
nothing in the legislative history of the Act supported a
The difficulty in the instant case is, as mentioned earlier,
that Woodall's allegations do not precisely define the
relationship between Servomation and the IDOC. A more
comprehensive picture of the arrangement among Servomation,
the IDOC and Woodall is necessary in order for the Court to
assess the economic reality of the situation and to determine
whether Woodall may claim the benefits of the Fair Labor
Standards Act. Accordingly, defendants Servomation and Fairman
are given 45 days to file motions for summary judgment
consistent with our discussion herein and supported by
affidavits or other documents demonstrating the relationship
among Servomation, the IDOC and Woodall.*fn6 Defendants
should also address (1) the question whether the IDOC is an
"employer" within the meaning of the Fair Labor Standards Act,
and (2) the applicability of the Illinois Minimum Wage Law,
Ill.Rev.Stat. ch. 48, §§ 1001-1015 (1981).
For the reasons set forth herein:
(1) Woodall's claim that he was placed in segregation
without a prior hearing is dismissed with leave to file,
within 60 days, an amended complaint naming the individuals
responsible for the claimed deprivation.
(2) Partilla's motion to quash will be granted, and she is
dismissed from this lawsuit.
(3) The motion to dismiss on behalf of the five Joliet
defendants is granted in part, denied in part as follows:
(a) The motion to dismiss as to Tibbitts, Hampton, Green and
Matuszeuski is granted as to all claims.
(b) The motion to dismiss as to Fairman is granted as to all
claims except those based upon the Fair Labor Standards Act
and the Illinois Minimum Wage Law. Fairman is given 45 days to
file a motion for summary judgment as outlined in Section VI.
(4) Servomation, Inc.'s motion to dismiss is granted as to
all claims except those based upon the Fair Labor Standards
Act and the Illinois Minimum Wage Law. Servomation is given 45
days to file a motion for summary judgment as outlined in
(5) The status date of March 2, 1984, is vacated and a
status hearing is reset in open court for April 27, 1984, at
It is so ordered.