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PRISON LAW OFFICE

General Delivery, San Quentin CA. 94964 Telephone (510) 280-2621 Fax (510) 280-2704 www.prisonlaw.com

Director: Donald Specter Managing Attorney: Sara Norman Staff Attorneys: Rana Anabtawi Susan Christian Rebekah Evenson Steven Fama Penny Godbold Megan Hagler Alison Hardy Corene Kendrick Kelly Knapp Millard Murphy Lynn Wu

Your Responsibility When Using the Information Provided Below: When putting this together, we did our best to give you useful and accurate information because we know that prisoners often have trouble getting legal information, and we cannot give specific advice to all prisoners. Laws and policies change often and can be looked at in different ways. We do not always have the resources to make changes to this material as soon as laws or policies change. If you use this pamphlet, it is your responsibility to make sure that the law or policy has not changed. Most of the materials you need should be available in your institutions law library.

INFORMATION ABOUT ARIZONAS INMATE GRIEVANCE SYSTEM Medical and Non-Medical Grievances
An Arizona prisoner may file a grievance related to any aspect of institutional life or condition of confinement that directly and personally affects him or her. This includes the actions (or inactions) of prison staff, as well as written instructions, policies, and procedures. The rules that set out the process for filing grievances are at Department Order # 802, Inmate Grievance Procedure, dated July 13, 2009, and Directors Instruction # 287, dated May 28, 2010. When we refer to these rules in this letter, we shorten them to DO 802 and DI 287. The process used for medical grievances is different from general grievances, and we discuss it beginning at page 5. Filing a grievance takes time and work, but it can resolve a problem. More importantly, prisoners who wish to file a civil rights lawsuit or habeas corpus petition against ADC for violation of their rights must first go all the way through (exhaust) this process. When you file a medical or non-medical grievance, remember: There are strict time limits for each step of the process. You need to file your grievance as soon as and no later than 10 work days to the first time the action or inaction affected you. Keep good notes of the dates you file documents, and when you should get them back. Make sure to write down if the time limit specifies work days (Saturday and Sunday dont count) or calendar days or days (Saturday and Sunday do count). ADC also has time limits for when they are supposed to respond to you. One tip is that as soon as you file a grievance, count out all the deadlines in the entire process on a calendar and write them down, so you know when you should be getting responses and/or file the next level of appeal. At every stage of the process, if you dont get a response by the date ADC staff should respond to you, go forward and file the next level grievance. If you didnt get a response, make sure to write at the very top of the next grievance form that you fill out, I did not get a timely response at the prior level of grievance. That way they cant throw out your appeal for not having all documents and responses with it. Save copies of all paperwork. In addition to making copies for you to hold on to, you may also want to send copies of everything to a family member in the community, in case your copies are
Board of Directors Penelope Cooper, President Michele WalkinHawk, Vice President Marshall Krause, Treasurer Honorable John Burton Felecia Gaston Christiane Hipps Margaret Johns Cesar Lagleva Laura Magnani Michael Marcum Ruth Morgan Dennis Roberts

Prison Law Office Arizona Grievances Letter (Nov. 2011) Page 2 lost. You need to have copies of everything, because every time you go to the next level in the process, you must attach copies of all papers you have filed so far, and responses (if any). Each grievance you file can only be about one thing. If you have multiple complaints, file a separate grievance for each issue, and follow it through to the end of the process. For example, if you want to complain about not getting enough food, and also about not getting access to the law library, these have to be written on separate grievance forms.

STEPS TO FILE A NON-MEDICAL GRIEVANCE Below is a summary of the most important rules and the steps in filing a non-medical grievance, and a few practical tips to ensure your grievance is exhausted. There are four steps to filing a non-medical grievance. STEP ONE: Try to solve your complaint informally. (DO 802.02): First, try to talk with the staff people most responsible for the problem. If they wont talk to you, youre not satisfied with the answer you get, or your problem isnt fixed, then go to the second informal method: Second, submit a Form 916-1 Inmate Letter to the CO III of your unit. You must do this within 10 work days of the original incident. The first line should say, I am trying to informally resolve the problem: _____ and then describe the problem in one sentence. Be brief and to the point. No matter how upset, angry, or frustrated you feel, do not be emotional, sarcastic, make insults or accusations in what you write, because that will be grounds to throw out your grievance. Instead, after writing that line, (1) describe the problem; (2) describe what the impact is on you because of the problem; (3) request or suggest how the problem could be fixed. Make sure to be clear and to the point. Keep a copy of the 916-1 for yourself. The CO III must provide you a written response within 15 work days. If you dont get a response by then, go to the next step. If you are not satisfied with the response, you must file a formal grievance within 5 work days of receiving it. Our advice is to go to Step Two as soon as you get the response, and dont wait five work days. STEP ONE IMPORTANT DATES: File the 916-1 Inmate Letter within 10 work days of the incident or impact of the policy on you. Save a copy for yourself. The CO-III must respond to you within 15 work days of receiving your letter. If there is no response by then, go to Step Two. If you get a response and arent satisfied, you have 5 work days from receiving it to go to Step Two.

Prison Law Office Arizona Grievances Letter (Nov. 2011) Page 3 STEP TWO: File a formal Inmate Grievance. (DO 802.03) As soon as you get (and no later than 5 work days after receiving) a response to your Inmate Letter, or after 15 work days have passed with no response, fill out a Form 802-1 Inmate Grievance. State what the problem is, how you tried to resolve it informally, and what you want them to do. Attach a copy of your original inmate letter (step one), and a copy of the response. If you did not receive a response, write, I did not get a response to my inmate letter within 15 work days. Give everything to the CO-IV Grievance Coordinator on your yard, and save a copy of the 802-1 and all other documents for yourself. The CO-IV will log and assign a number to your grievance. Make sure to write down the number in your own records. If the CO-III didnt respond to your informal letter in step one, your formal grievance will be given to the CO-III to answer and return to the CO-IV. Otherwise, the CO-IV or a staff person will review and answer your grievance. The CO-IV must give you a written response within 15 work days of receiving the grievance. The response will be signed by the Deputy Warden. If you dont get a response by then, go to the next step. If you are not satisfied by the response, you must file a formal appeal to the Warden within 5 work days of receiving the grievance response. STEP TWO IMPORTANT DATES: File the 802-1 Inmate Grievance form within 5 work days of getting a response to your Inmate Letter. If you did not get a response to your letter, file the grievance 15 work days after you filed the letter and write on the form that you didnt receive a response. The CO-IV must respond to you within 15 work days of receiving your Inmate Grievance. If there is no response by then, go to Step Three. If you get a response and dont like it, you have 5 work days to go to Step Three.

STEP THREE: File an Inmate Grievance Appeal with the Warden. (DO 802.05) As soon as you get (and no later than 5 work days after receiving) a response to your grievance, or after 15 work days have passed with no response to your grievance, fill out a Form 802-3 Inmate Grievance Appeal to go to the Warden. In the appeal, say what the problem is, how you tried to resolve it so far, and what you want them to do. You must also attach a copy of your original inmate letter and any response (step one), and a copy of your inmate grievance and any response (step two). If you did not receive a response to your grievance, write, I did not get a response to my grievance within 15 work days. Give everything to the CO-IV Grievance Coordinator on your yard, and save a copy of the 802-3 and the attachments for yourself. The CO-IV will send your appeal to the Warden. The Warden must give you a written response within 20 work days of receipt of your appeal. If you dont get a response by then, go to the next step. If you are not satisfied with the Wardens response, you must file an appeal with the ADC Director within 5 work days of receiving the Wardens response.

Prison Law Office Arizona Grievances Letter (Nov. 2011) Page 4 STEP THREE IMPORTANT DATES: File the 802-3 Inmate Grievance Appeal form within 5 work days of receiving a response to your grievance. If you did not receive a response, file the appeal 15 work days after you filed the grievance and write on the appeal that you didnt receive a response. The Warden must respond to you within 20 work days of receiving your appeal. If there is no response by then, go to Step Four. If you get a response and dont like it, you have 5 work days to go to Step Four.

STEP FOUR: File an Inmate Grievance Appeal with the ADC Director. (DO 802.07). As soon as you get (and no later than 5 work days after receiving) an appeal response from the Warden, or if 20 work days have passed with no response from the Warden to your appeal, you can appeal to the ADC Director. Fill out a Form 802-3 Inmate Grievance Appeal. In the appeal, say what the problem is, how you tried to resolve it so far, and what you want them to do. You must also attach a copy of your original inmate letter and any response (step one), a copy of your inmate grievance and any response (step two), and a copy of your appeal to the warden and any response (step three). If you did not receive a response from the Warden at step three, write, I did not get a response to my inmate grievance appeal within 20 work days. Save a copy of the 802-3 (and copies of the attached forms) for yourself, and give everything to the CO-IV Grievance Coordinator on your yard. The CO-IV has 5 work days to send your appeal to ADCs Central Appeals Office. The Director has 30 CALENDAR days (includes weekends) to give you a written response to your appeal. The Directors response is final, and you have exhausted the administrative remedies. You may now pursue a lawsuit if the response has not been satisfactory STEP FOUR IMPORTANT DATES: File the 802-3 Inmate Grievance Appeal form within 5 work days of receiving a response from the Warden. If you did not receive a response, file the 802-3 20 work days after you filed the appeal and write on it that you didnt receive a response to the 802-3. The Director must respond to you within 30 calendar days of receiving your Inmate Grievance. You have now exhausted your grievance. You may now pursue a lawsuit in state or federal court.

Prison Law Office Arizona Grievances Letter (Nov. 2011) Page 5 STEPS TO FILE A MEDICAL GRIEVANCE Below is a summary of the most important rules and the steps in filing a grievance about medical or mental health care, and a few practical tips to ensure your grievance is exhausted. The time frames are similar to those for non-medical grievances, but there are only three steps to filing a medical grievance these grievances cannot be appealed to the warden. (DI 287, 802.05.1.6) STEP ONE: Try to solve your complaint informally. (DO 802.02): First, try to talk with the medical or mental health staff who are most responsible for the problem. If they wont talk to you, youre not satisfied with the answer you get, or your problem isnt fixed, then go to the second informal method. Second, Submit a Form 916-1 Inmate Letter to the CO III of your unit. You must do this within 10 work days of the original incident. The CO-III will contact medical staff to attempt to resolve the problem. NOTE: A Health Needs Request (HNR) cannot be used as an informal grievance; you must use the Inmate Letter form 916-1. The CO-III and medical staff must respond in writing, within 15 work days. If you dont get a response by that day, go to the next step. If they respond and you are not satisfied, you must file a formal medical grievance within 5 work days of receiving the response. STEP ONE IMPORTANT DATES: File the 916-1 Inmate Letter form within 10 work days of the incident or impact of the actions or inactions of medical staff on you. Save a copy for yourself. The CO-III must forward your letter to medical staff and respond to you within 15 work days of receiving your letter. If there is no response by then, go to Step Two. If you get a response and arent satisfied, you have 5 work days to go to Step Two.

STEP TWO: File a formal medical grievance. (DI 287, 802.04) As soon as you get (and no later than 5 work days after receiving) a response to your informal letter, or if you havent received a response to your informal letter within 15 work days, fill out a Form 802-1 Inmate Grievance. In the grievance, say what the medical problem is, how you tried to resolve it informally, and what you want them to do. You must attach a copy of your original inmate letter (step one), and a copy of the response. If you did not receive a response, write, I did not get a response to my inmate letter within 15 work days. Give everything to the CO-IV Grievance Coordinator on your yard, and save a copy of all papers for yourself. The CO-IV will log and assign a number to your Inmate Grievance. Make sure to write down the number in your own records.

Prison Law Office Arizona Grievances Letter (Nov. 2011) Page 6 The CO-IV must immediately forward the form to the Facility Health Administrator (FHA). The FHA will investigate and may meet with you to discuss the issue. Within 15 work days of receiving your grievance, the FHA will prepare a written response for the CO-IV to give you. If you dont get a response by then, go to the next step. If you dont like the response, you must file an appeal within 5 working days of receiving the response. STEP TWO IMPORTANT DATES: File the 802-1 Inmate Grievance form within 5 work days of receiving a response to your Inmate Letter. If you did not receive a response, file the grievance 15 work days after you filed the letter and write on it that you didnt receive a response to the 916-1. The CO-IV immediately forwards your grievance to the FHA, who must respond to you within 15 work days. If there is no response by then, go to Step Three. If you get a response and arent satisfied, you have 5 work days to go to Step Three.

STEP THREE: File a Medical Grievance Appeal with the ADC Directors Office. (DI 287, 802.06). As soon as you get (and no later than 5 work days after receiving) an grievance response, or if 15 work days have passed with no response to your medical grievance, you can appeal to the ADC Director. Fill out a Form 802-3 Inmate Grievance Appeal. In the appeal, say what the problem is, how you tried to resolve it so far, and what you want them to do. You must attach a copy of your inmate letter and any response (step one), and a copy of your inmate grievance and any response (step two). If you did not receive a response to your grievance, write, I did not get a response to my inmate grievance within 15 work days. Give everything to the CO-IV Grievance Coordinator on your yard, and save a copy of all papers for yourself. The CO-IV must immediately send your appeal to ADCs Assistant Director of Health Services. The Assistant Director has 30 CALENDAR days (includes weekends) to research your issue, and prepare a written response for the ADC Directors signature. The Directors response is final, and you have exhausted the administrative remedies. You may now pursue a lawsuit if the response has not been satisfactory. STEP THREE IMPORTANT DATES: File the 802-3 Inmate Grievance Appeal form within 5 work days of receiving a response to your grievance. If you did not receive a response, file the appeal 20 work days after you filed the grievance and write on it that you didnt receive a response to the 802-3. The Director must respond to you within 30 calendar days of receiving your Inmate Grievance. You have now exhausted your grievance. You may now pursue a lawsuit in state or federal court.