----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Linda C. Miller" <lcmiller@tx3.net>
Sent: Tuesday, November 12, 2002 9:52 AM
Subject: [patrickcrusade] OR Prisoners with HCV - Class Action Suit Update

Forwarded from another list.  GO OREGON!!!!  Now let's see the other states
follow Oregon's lead!


On Thursday November 7, 2002 we had a hearing before the Honorable Anna Brown in the United States District Court for the District of Oregon on our Motion to Certify Class.  The judge ruled from the bench immediately. The entire proceeding took approximately ten minutes.  The judge found that we had made our burden on each and every necessary element of Fed. R. Civ. P. 23 (class actions).  The judge made specific findings under each element of 23a and 23b.  The court found that we qualified as a 23(b) class on liability alone and that the appropriate remedy in that proceeding would be for injunctive relief only.

The court also indicated that our definition of our putative class was too broad.  We are redefining the class and hope to have some of the specifics as to the remainder of the case by mid-December.

Translated:  The court found that we could proceed as a class to trial as to whether or not ODOC' policies, procedures and conduct violated the various inmate's rights, whether they violated the acceptable standard of care and whether she would enter a judgment in our favor.  Thereafter each individual inmate would be required to litigate their own individual damages, but if we won the first phase of the case they would not have to prove liability against ODOC.

This is a significant victory for us.  I am told this is the first class of inmates qualified as such in Oregon in thirty years.  This is the first class certified in the United States on the HCV issue.


"We can't solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them." - Albert Einstein