Lawsuit: Georgia is denying equal access for deaf inmates

June 20, 2018 - 11:19 am

ATLANTA (AP) — A federal lawsuit says Georgia isn't doing enough to help deaf and partially deaf inmates communicate while they're locked up and after they're released.

The complaint filed Wednesday by the American Civil Liberties Union of Georgia accuses three state agencies of not providing deaf inmates with interpreters and other tools to communicate. The lawsuit says that violates the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Rehabilitation Act.

Attorney Susan Mizner says the ACLU wants equal access to resources for non-hearing inmates. The suit seeks class-action status.

Named in the suit are the Department of Corrections, the Department of Community Supervision and the State Board of Pardons and Paroles.

A corrections spokeswoman said she couldn't comment on the lawsuit but said the department has taken steps to improve services for deaf inmates.

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