CALIFORNIA – United States Magistrate Judge Kendall J. Newman dismissed HIV postive inmate Gondee Charles Singletary’s pro se complaint upon initial screening under 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(a), because it failed to show how the named defendants were responsible under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 for the challenged policy – to wit: denying HIV+ inmates placement on a kidney transplant list. Singletary sued the warden, the chief medical officer, and the receiver appointed to oversee California’s prison medical care, seeking damages and an injunction. After extensive discussion about the receiver’s amenability to suit, Judge Newman found him entitled to quasi-judicial immunity as an appointee of the court. He granted Singletary leave to file an amended complaint about the warden and the chief medical officer, with instructions to show an “actual connection or link” between the constitutional violation and the acts of the defendants, citing Rizzo v. Goode, 423 U.S. 362 (1976). Judge Newman wrote: “Plaintiff has not alleged that defendants were personally involved in the constitutional deprivation or that they instituted the allegedly deficient policy. Plaintiff will be given leave to cure this deficiency.” Although the case would seem to present such issues, there is no discussion of the Americans with Disabilities or Rehabilitation Acts; and Judge Newman did not appoint counsel. (Summary provided by September 2015 Lesbian / Gay Law Notes).
The Center for HIV Law and Policy is a national resource and advocacy organization working to advance the rights of people affected by HIV. We combine an online HIV Policy Resource Bank, a creative national advocacy agenda, and case assistance focused on systems and institutions with significant impact on marginalized communities.