Legal settlement will ensure timely mental health care for inmates

Colorado has agreed to hire an independent consultant to ensure that its mental health system doesn’t violate inmates’ rights to a speedy trial.

The agreement was reached Tuesday in the settlement of a lawsuit brought against the state in December 2015 by the Disability Law Center. The suit re-opened a 2012 case in which the Center challenged what it called the state’s chronic delays in court-ordered competency evaluations for inmates awaiting trial. The Center said inmates were waiting weeks, even months, for evaluations and treatment.

The suit also alleged that the Colorado Department of Human Services had fabricated monthly data to make it appear as though detainees were receiving timely services. The agreement orders the department to hire an independent consultant to oversee continuing operations of the state’s mental health system for the remaining duration of a 10-year agreement made in 2012. The consultant is to ensure compliance and data reporting, and is to meet with DLC and the state on a quarterly basis to provide updates.

Flickr photo by Michael Coghlan.


  1. To whom it concerns. The Colorado department of health and human services is oppressive in collusion with regional healthcare in it’s cannabis bias for socioeconomically disadvantaged. They also colluded with my employer to bury my report delivered in person of wrongdoing involving our municipal landfill. I’ll testify. By the way it is a raw deal for us who medicate with cannabis to continue to hear how we must game system and may not medicate in at this not between my dr. And I according to need? Wtf

  2. You should see how they have handle the hungry down our way. Dismal track record they try to pass off as doing an ok job, my posterior. Peace

  3. … and what would mental health advocates say when an inmate awaiting trial is given 3 MH assessments, picking and choosing the desired result for prosecution? In a case that hardly warranted felony charges? Larimer County:

    overcharge defendants, isolate in county jails, violate speedy trial deadlines and hope for a plea. Then call it a victory for the prosecution.

    Abuse of process with bias toward the prosecution? How fair is that?

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