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Wed August 25, 2004
Judge Approves Tutwiler Settlement
By Alabama Public Radio
Wetumpka, AL – A federal judge has approved a settlement of a lawsuit to revamp medical care and living conditions at Tutwiler prison for women. U-S District Court Judge Myron Thompson ruled that the settlement between attorneys for inmates and the Department of Corrections properly avoids a trial and calls for essential improvements. Those improvements are designed to make a safer, less crowded living space at the Wetumpka prison. Thompson signed an order Monday, saying the settlement will not make the women's prison facilities comfortable or pleasant places, but it will afford the basics. He approved the pact after hearing from 81 inmates and after visiting the women's prison twice in the past two years. Most of the inmates' concerns focused on the heat inside the prison, a lack of medical attention and the risk of physical violence.