Legal Aid Society


Data: Incarcerated New Yorkers Denied Nearly 40K Medical Appointments

New data provided by the City shows that the New York City Department of Correction (DOC) failed to facilitate 39,728 medical care appointments from January 1 to April 30, 2022, including 11,789 appointments in April alone.

This October, The Legal Aid Society, Brooklyn Defender Services, and Milbank LLP filed a class-action lawsuit against the DOC over its continued failure to provide access to medical care in the City jails. A judge ordered the City to comply with the suit’s demands, but the Department has failed to meet that obligation.

In May, the court found DOC in contempt and gave the City 30 days to demonstrate that it is no longer violating the Court’s order or face a $100 fine for each medical appointment missed from December 11, 2021 through January 2022, meaning the City would owe approximately $190,900 to the people affected by the jails’ broken medical care system.

“This is more proof that the Department of Correction is wholly unwilling to care for New Yorkers in its custody, and in the process, continues to defy a court order and its basic moral and legal obligations,” reads a statement from Legal Aid and its partners. “This failure results in daily suffering, sickness, and pain. DOC has admitted that they would be better able to serve a smaller jail population. We once again call on DOC, the courts, prosecutors, and elected officials to use every avenue to reduce the population of New York’s life-threatening jails.”