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Civil Rights

Women's Huron Valley (Scabies)

Pearson v. Michigan Department of Corrections et al,
Court File No. 2:19-CV-10707 (E.D. Mich.)

On March 8, 2019, we filed a case against Michigan Department of Corrections, and Corizon Health, Inc. (among other parties) in the Eastern District of Michigan. We bring this case on behalf of current and former inmates at Huron Valley Correctional Facility for Women (“WHV”). Plaintiffs filed a second amended complaint on May 3, 2019.

The complaint alleges in part that female inmates at WHV were regularly denied access to adequate medical and mental health care, hygienic conditions and movement. As a result, the women incarcerated at WHV were exposed to Sarcoptes scabiei (“scabies”), caused by the spread of parasitic mites. The complaint further alleges that the women complained for years, but their pleas went largely ignored. Defendants failed to provide adequate access to medical care, a properly trained medical staff, screening programs, appropriate medications, appropriate quarantine and disinfecting procedures, and resources to properly examine, test, and treat the women’s obvious symptoms of infestation.

This is a civil rights class action, brought under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, challenging the inhumane, dangerous, and unconstitutional conditions endured by Plaintiffs and other similarly situated women at WHV. The Plaintiffs on behalf of themselves and members of the proposed Classes, seek monetary damages, injunctive relief, and declaratory relief.

Nichols Kaster, PLLP is co-counsel with Marko Law, PLLC and Pitt McGehee Palmer & Rivers PC and Steingold Law on this matter.

Type of Case

Prisoner Rights

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Am I eligible?

This case seeks to represent a class of all current and former detainees and inmates in WHV who, while incarcerated at WHV, had a skin rash consistent with a scabies infestation and who were denied treatment, or whose delayed treatment caused the condition to worsen, since November 2016.  This case seeks to represent an injunctive relief class on behalf of all WHV inmates since November of 2016.  If you have questions about whether you are included in these classes, contact us.

Additional Information

What is a Class Action?

In a class action lawsuit, one or more people, called the “class representatives,” sue on behalf of themselves and other people who have similar claims. Together, this group of people is called a “class” or “class members.” The class representative and the class members together are called the “Plaintiffs.” The companies they sue are called the “Defendants.” The judge or jury resolves the claims for everyone in the class—except those who ask to be excluded from the lawsuit.

How Long Will This Case Take?

Class actions can often take years.  Please check this page periodically for updates on the case’s status.

How Do I Join This Case?

As part of our investigatory efforts, we are interested in speaking with others who are or were incarcerated at Huron Valley Correctional Facility and believe they were treated unlawfully.

You may contact us toll free at 1-877-448-0492, write to us at Nichols Kaster, PLLP, 4600 IDS Center, 80 South Eighth Street, Minneapolis, MN 55402, or email Attorney Nicole Schladt at nschladt@nka.com.

Case Updates

  • June 20, 2019

    Michigan Department of Corrections, and Corizon Health, Inc. Case Update

    The court issued an order, holding in abeyance Plaintiffs’ motion to consolidate related cases. On May 8, 2019, the court stayed Defendants’ obligations to respond or otherwise answer the complaint. The court will set a status conference for the parties and the court before lifting the stay.

  • June 7, 2019

    Michigan Department of Corrections, and Corizon Health, Inc. Case Update

    Plaintiffs have asked the court to consolidate, or combined, this class action with a similar class action entitled Smith v. MDOC. Plaintiffs also asked the court to appoint their attorneys as interim lead class counsel.

  • May 22, 2019

    Michigan Department of Corrections, and Corizon Health, Inc. Case Update

    Local report reveals that recent testing discovered another scabies outbreak at Women’s Huron Valley Correctional Facility.

  • March 8, 2019

    Michigan Department of Corrections, and Corizon Health, Inc. Case Update

    On March 8, 2019, we filed a case against Michigan Department of Corrections, and Corizon Health., Inc. (among other parties) in the Eastern District of Michigan. Local news coverage of our case and the circumstances alleged therein can be found here.

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