The opinion of the court was delivered by: Richard Mills, District Judge:
Is there a constitutional right to work in prison?
Fuller and Hollgarth (former inmates at the Lincoln
Correctional Center) initiated this civil rights action under
42 U.S.C. § 1983 alleging that Defendants — various employees of the
Illinois Department of Corrections — violated their
constitutional rights by denying them placement in a work release
program. Plaintiffs claim that Defendants impermissibly deny all
convicted sex offenders placement in the program.
Currently before the Court is Defendants' motion for summary
Summary judgment "shall be rendered forthwith if the pleadings,
depositions, answers to interrogatories, and admissions on file,
together with the affidavits, if any, show that there is no
genuine issue as to any material fact and that the moving party
is entitled to a judgment as a matter of law." Fed.R.Civ.P.
56(c); Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 322, 106 S.Ct.
2548, 2552-53, 91 L.Ed.2d 265 (1986); Herman v. National
Broadcasting Co., Inc., 744 F.2d 604, 607 (7th Cir. 1984), cert.
denied, 470 U.S. 1028, 105 S.Ct. 1393, 84 L.Ed.2d 782 (1985). Of
course, "[i]n determining whether factual issues exist, a
reviewing court must view all the evidence in the light most
favorable to the non-moving party." Black v. Henry Pratt Co.,
778 F.2d 1278, 1281 (7th Cir. 1985). However, "Rule 56(c) mandates
the entry of summary judgment . . . against a party who fails to
make a showing sufficient to establish the existence of an
element essential to that party's case, and on which that party
will bear the burden of proof at trial." Celotex, 477 U.S. at
322, 106 S.Ct. at 2553.
The undisputed facts are as follows: Both Plaintiffs were
incarcerated in the Lincoln Correctional Center at the time this
action arose. David Fuller was serving a seven-year sentence for
attempted deviate sexual assault, intimidation, and unlawful
restraint. George Hollgarth was serving a sentence for an
aggravated criminal sexual abuse conviction.
In March 1985, Fuller applied for the work release program at
the Lincoln Correctional Minimum Security Center. His application
was approved at the institutional level. On June 3, 1985,
however, Defendant Joseph Galassi, the Transfer Coordinator for
the Illinois Department of Corrections, denied Fuller's request.
Galassi stated that he was denying Fuller's pre-release
application "[b]ased on the nature of the offense."
Fuller filed a second application for participation in the work
release program after the waiting period for reviewing requests
expired. His application was again denied. On December 20, 1985,
Defendant Lane, the Director of Corrections, wrote a letter to
I have taken the liberty of reviewing your general
office file and I note that the Transfer Coordinator
initially denied your request for community
correctional center placement on June 3, 1985, based
upon the serious nature of the instant offense. I
note that you are serving concurrent sentences of
seven-years for Attempted Deviate Sexual Assault,
four-years for Intimidation and three-years for
Unlawful Restraint. You appeared before the
Administrative Review Board Board on July 5, 1985, at
which time that Panel recommended, to which I
concurred, that your grievance be denied.
Essentially, I remain of the opinion that the
rationale cited by the Transfer Coordinator was
appropriate. Therefore, no further action is
warranted with regard to this issue.