The opinion of the court was delivered by: Harold A. Baker United States District Judge
This cause is before the court for consideration the defendants motion for summary judgment. [d/e 79]
Three pro se plaintiffs, Floyd May, Andre Mason and Demond Reid, filed this lawsuit pursuant to 42 U.S.C. §1983 alleging that their constitutional rights were violated at the Pontiac Correctional Center. The plaintiffs have named nine defendants including Warden Stephen Mote; Superintendents Troy Quinley, Malcolm Davidson, and Francis Melvin; Correctional Officers Michael Burger and Edward Gerber; Warden Greg Cox; and Lieutenants Lance Evans and Scott Punke. After merit review, the court found that the plaintiff's had adequately alleged that:
1) The lack of adequate clothing provided for cold and rain violated the plaintiffs' Eighth Amendment rights,
2) The lack of adequate clothing violated the plaintiffs' rights under the equal protection clause, and
3) The implementation of the excessive noise policy violated the plaintiffs' rights under the First and Eighth Amendments.
The claims are against the defendants in their individual capacities only.
The plaintiffs are all Illinois Department of Corrections inmates who were incarcerated in the segregation unit at Pontiac Correctional Center during the events outlined in their complaint.
The plaintiffs allege that the clothing provided to them in segregation is inadequate for outdoor weather. The parties agree that inmates are provided underclothes, short sleeve jump suits, a medium weight coat, socks and shoes. The plaintiffs state that the shoes they are issued are deck shoes that are not appropriate for winter months. In addition, segregation inmates may purchase thermal underwear in the commissary but no extra clothing is available for indigent inmates.
The plaintiffs claim that inmates who are not in the segregation unit are also issued boots, heavier coats and headgear. In addition, inmates who are required to work outside for 30 minutes or longer are issued boots, gloves, thermal underwear and a snowsuit during the winter months.
Segregation inmates may go to the segregation pods in the yard for 2 1/2 hours recreation time twice each week In order to be allowed recreation time, a segregation inmate must be dressed in their underwear with all garments they intend to wear displayed on the cell bars so guards can search the clothing. The only other time segregation inmates go outside is when they must go to a separate building such as the Health Care Unit. The plaintiffs state that anytime a segregation inmate leaves his cell, he is also secured in restraints.
Public Service Administrator Troy Quinley states that segregation inmates are limited to recreation time in individual segregation pods for security concerns. In addition, Quinley states that each segregation inmate's clothing is searched prior to escorting the inmate to the recreation pod for security reasons.
Quinley states that segregation inmates are not allowed to wear multiple layers of the same clothing items outside their cells and this restriction includes yard time. Quinley says in the past, some inmates have tried to conceal weapons, drugs, money or other dangerous items in their layered clothing. Quinley states inmates have also attempted ...