Florida Senate - 2019 SB 1402
By Senator Farmer
1 A bill to be entitled
2 An act relating to inmate confinement; creating s.
3 944.175, F.S.; defining terms; prohibiting the use of
4 solitary confinement; prohibiting the use of
5 restrictive confinement for noncompliance, punishment,
6 harassment, or retaliation for an inmate’s conduct;
7 authorizing an inmate to be placed in restrictive
8 confinement only if certain conditions are met;
9 providing restrictions and requirements for such
10 confinement; prohibiting specified inmates from being
11 placed in restrictive confinement; prohibiting youths,
12 young adults, and inmates who have specified medical
13 needs from being placed in restrictive confinement
14 except under specified circumstances; requiring
15 facilities to keep certain records regarding
16 restrictive confinement; requiring the warden of the
17 facility to review the records; requiring the
18 department to provide a report to the Department of
19 Law Enforcement; providing that an inmate is entitled
20 to a review of his or her placement in restrictive
21 confinement by a specified review committee within a
22 specified timeframe; amending s. 944.09, F.S.;
23 authorizing the Department of Corrections to adopt
24 rules; amending s. 951.23, F.S.; requiring sheriffs
25 and chief correctional officers to adopt model
26 standards relating to confinement; amending s.
27 985.601, F.S.; requiring the Department of Juvenile
28 Justice to adopt rules; reenacting s. 944.279(1),
29 F.S., relating to disciplinary procedures applicable
30 to a prisoner for filing frivolous or malicious
31 actions or bringing false information before a court,
32 to incorporate the amendment made to s. 944.09, F.S.,
33 in a reference thereto; providing an effective date.
35 Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
37 Section 1. Section 944.175, Florida Statutes, is created to
39 944.175 Restrictions on the use of confinement.—
40 (1) DEFINITIONS.—As used in this section, the term:
41 (a) “Exigent circumstances” means circumstances that pose
42 an immediate and substantial threat to the safety of an inmate
43 or a correctional staff member.
44 (b) “Inmate” means a person in the custody of the
45 department who is 18 years of age or older.
46 (c) “Mental health professional” means a psychiatrist,
47 psychologist, social worker, or nurse practitioner.
48 (d) “Restrictive confinement” means the involuntary
49 placement of an inmate in a cell alone or with other inmates in
50 substantial isolation for more than 20 hours per day.
51 (e) “Solitary confinement” means the involuntary placement
52 of an inmate in a cell alone or with other inmates in
53 substantial isolation for more than 22 hours per day.
54 (f) “Young adult” means a person in the custody of the
55 department who is at least 18 years of age but is not yet 21
56 years of age.
57 (g) “Youth” means a person in the custody of the department
58 who is under 18 years of age.
59 (2) PROHIBITION ON THE USE OF SOLITARY CONFINEMENT.—An
60 inmate may not be placed in solitary confinement.
61 (3) LIMITATIONS ON THE USE OF RESTRICTIVE CONFINEMENT.—An
62 inmate may not be placed in restrictive confinement except in
63 exigent circumstances, when such placement will significantly
64 reduce the safety threat that the exigent circumstances created.
65 An inmate may not be confined for any period of time to an
66 individual cell as a consequence for noncompliance, punishment,
67 harassment, or in retaliation for an inmate’s conduct. If
68 exigent circumstances exist and the inmate is placed in
69 restrictive confinement, the inmate:
70 (a) May not be housed in restrictive confinement for more
71 than 15 consecutive days;
72 (b) May not be housed in restrictive confinement for more
73 than 20 days in a 60-day period;
74 (c) May be held in restrictive confinement only until the
75 substantial threat to the safety of an inmate or a correctional
76 staff member has ended and must be under the least restrictive
77 conditions practicable, in relation to the exigent circumstances
78 necessitating the use of restrictive confinement. The
79 confinement must include at least 4 hours of out-of-cell time
80 every day;
81 (d) Must be allowed to participate in meaningful
82 programming opportunities and privileges that are consistent
83 with those available to the general inmate population, as
84 practicable. The programming opportunities and privileges may
85 take place individually or in a classroom setting;
86 (e) Must be allowed to have as much meaningful interaction
87 with others, such as other inmates, visitors, clergymen, or
88 licensed mental health professionals, as practicable; and
89 (f) Must be evaluated by a licensed mental health
90 professional at least once every 24 hours to determine if the
91 inmate should remain in restrictive confinement or if the inmate
92 should be removed from restrictive confinement to prevent a
93 serious risk of harm to the inmate. The licensed mental health
94 professional who conducts the mental health evaluation shall
95 document each evaluation. The documented evaluation must be
96 placed in the inmate’s records. If the licensed mental health
97 professional determines that continued housing in restrictive
98 confinement poses a serious risk of harm to the inmate, the
99 inmate must be removed from restrictive confinement within 24
100 hours after the determination.
101 (4) INMATES FOR WHOM RESTRICTIVE CONFINEMENT IS
102 PROHIBITED.—An inmate may not be placed in restrictive
103 confinement because he or she is a member of a vulnerable
104 population, including an inmate who is lesbian, gay, bisexual,
105 transgender, intersex, or gender nonconforming, and the inmate
106 has been placed in restrictive confinement solely on the basis
107 of such identification or status.
108 (5) YOUTHS AND YOUNG ADULTS.—
109 (a) A youth or young adult may not be placed in restrictive
110 confinement unless:
111 1. The youth’s or young adult’s behavior poses a serious
112 and immediate threat and such confinement is a necessary and
113 temporary response to the behavior;
114 2. All other options to deescalate the situation have been
115 exhausted, including less restrictive techniques such as
116 penalizing the youth or young adult through loss of privileges,
117 speaking with the youth or young adult in an attempt to resolve
118 the situation, and having a licensed mental health professional
119 provide an appropriate level of care; and
120 3. If the youth or young adult poses a substantial and
121 immediate threat to others, such confinement extends only to the
122 time necessary for the youth or young adult to regain self
123 control. The confinement may not exceed 3 hours. Within 1 hour
124 of such placement, a licensed mental health professional shall
125 approve or disapprove of holding the youth or young adult past
126 the initial hour of confinement. The licensed mental health
127 professional shall make such determination every hour thereafter
128 in order to continue the confinement.
129 (b) If, after the applicable maximum period of confinement
130 under subparagraph (a)3. has expired and the youth or young
131 adult continues to pose a substantial and immediate threat, he
132 or she must be transferred to another facility or to an internal
133 location where services may be provided to the youth or young
134 adult without relying on restrictive confinement. If a licensed
135 mental health professional believes the level of crisis services
136 needed is not currently available onsite, a staff member of the
137 facility must initiate a referral to a location that will meet
138 the needs of the youth or young adult.
139 (6) INMATES WITH MEDICAL NEEDS.—An inmate who has a serious
140 mental illness, has an intellectual disability, has a physical
141 disability that a licensed medical health professional
142 determines is likely to be exacerbated by placement in
143 restrictive confinement, is pregnant or in the first 8 weeks of
144 postpartum recovery, or has been determined by a licensed mental
145 health professional to likely be significantly and adversely
146 affected by placement in restrictive confinement may not be
147 placed in restrictive confinement unless all of the following
149 (a) The inmate poses a substantial and immediate threat.
150 (b) All other options to deescalate the situation have been
151 exhausted, including less restrictive techniques such as
152 penalizing the inmate through loss of privileges, speaking with
153 the inmate in an attempt to resolve the situation, or having a
154 licensed mental health professional provide an appropriate level
155 of care.
156 (c) Such confinement extends only until the substantial and
157 immediate threat has ended and is limited to the least
158 restrictive conditions practicable. The inmate shall have access
159 to medical care and mental health treatment during such
161 (d) Such confinement is reviewed by a multidisciplinary
162 staff committee for appropriateness every 24 hours after such
163 confinement begins.
164 (e) As soon as practicable, but within at least 5 days
165 after such confinement begins, the inmate is diverted, upon
166 release from restrictive confinement, to a general population
167 unit or a mental health treatment program.
168 (7) REPORTING.—The facility must keep records on each use
169 of restrictive confinement under subsections (5) and (6). The
170 warden of the facility must review the records each month, and
171 the department must provide a report on such review to the
172 Department of Law Enforcement each month.
173 (8) REVIEW.—An inmate who is placed in restrictive
174 confinement is entitled to a review of his or her initial
175 placement and any extension of restrictive confinement within 72
176 hours after first being placed in restrictive confinement. The
177 review must be conducted by a multidisciplinary staff committee
178 consisting of at least one of each of the following:
179 (a) A licensed mental health professional.
180 (b) A licensed medical professional.
181 (c) A member of the leadership of the facility.
182 Section 2. Paragraph (s) is added to subsection (1) of
183 section 944.09, Florida Statutes, to read:
184 944.09 Rules of the department; offenders, probationers,
185 and parolees.—
186 (1) The department has authority to adopt rules pursuant to
187 ss. 120.536(1) and 120.54 to implement its statutory authority.
188 The rules must include rules relating to:
189 (s) Inmate confinement in compliance with s. 944.175.
190 Section 3. Paragraph (a) of subsection (4) of section
191 951.23, Florida Statutes, is amended to read:
192 951.23 County and municipal detention facilities;
193 definitions; administration; standards and requirements.—
194 (4) STANDARDS FOR SHERIFFS AND CHIEF CORRECTIONAL
There shall be established A five-member working group
197 is established which consists consisting of three persons
198 appointed by the Florida Sheriffs Association and two persons
199 appointed by the Florida Association of Counties to develop
200 model standards for county and municipal detention facilities.
201 At a minimum By October 1, 1996, each sheriff and chief
202 correctional officer shall adopt , at a minimum, the model
203 standards with reference to:
204 1.a. The construction, equipping, maintenance, and
205 operation of county and municipal detention facilities.
206 b. The cleanliness and sanitation of county and municipal
207 detention facilities; the number of county and municipal
208 prisoners who may be housed therein per specified unit of floor
209 space; the quality, quantity, and supply of bedding furnished to
210 such prisoners; the quality, quantity, and diversity of food
211 served to them and the manner in which it is served; the
212 furnishing to them of medical attention and health and comfort
213 items; and the disciplinary treatment that which may be meted
214 out to them.
216 Notwithstanding the provisions of the otherwise applicable
217 building code, a reduced custody housing area may be occupied by
218 inmates or may be used for sleeping purposes as allowed in
219 subsection (7). The sheriff or chief correctional officer shall
220 provide that a reduced custody housing area shall be governed by
221 fire and life safety standards which do not interfere with the
222 normal use of the facility and which affect a reasonable degree
223 of compliance with rules of the State Fire Marshal for
224 correctional facilities.
225 2. The confinement of prisoners by classification and
226 providing, whenever possible, for classifications that which
227 separate males from females, juveniles from adults, felons from
228 misdemeanants, and those awaiting trial from those convicted
229 and, in addition, providing for the separation of special risk
230 prisoners, such as the mentally ill, alcohol or narcotic
231 addicts, sex deviates, suicide risks, and any other
232 classification which the local unit may deem necessary for the
233 safety of the prisoners and the operation of the facility
234 pursuant to degree of risk and danger criteria. Nondangerous
235 felons may be housed with misdemeanants.
236 3. The confinement of prisoners, in compliance with s.
238 Section 4. Paragraph (b) of subsection (9) of section
239 985.601, Florida Statutes, is amended to read:
240 985.601 Administering the juvenile justice continuum.—
242 (b) The department shall adopt rules prescribing standards
243 and requirements with reference to:
244 1. The construction, equipping, maintenance, staffing,
245 programming, and operation of detention facilities;
246 2. The treatment, training, and education of children
247 confined in detention facilities;
248 3. The cleanliness and sanitation of detention facilities;
249 4. The number of children who may be housed in detention
250 facilities per specified unit of floor space;
251 5. The quality, quantity, and supply of bedding furnished
252 to children housed in detention facilities;
253 6. The quality, quantity, and diversity of food served in
254 detention facilities and the manner in which it is served;
255 7. The furnishing of medical attention and health and
256 comfort items in detention facilities; and
257 8. The disciplinary treatment administered in detention
258 facilities; and
259 9. The use of restrictive confinement for prisoners, in
260 compliance with s. 944.175.
261 Section 5. For the purpose of incorporating the amendment
262 made by this act to section 944.09, Florida Statutes, in a
263 reference thereto, subsection (1) of section 944.279, Florida
264 Statutes, is reenacted to read:
265 944.279 Disciplinary procedures applicable to prisoner for
266 filing frivolous or malicious actions or bringing false
267 information before court.—
268 (1) At any time, and upon its own motion or on motion of a
269 party, a court may conduct an inquiry into whether any action or
270 appeal brought by a prisoner was brought in good faith. A
271 prisoner who is found by a court to have brought a frivolous or
272 malicious suit, action, claim, proceeding, or appeal in any
273 court of this state or in any federal court, which is filed
274 after June 30, 1996, or to have brought a frivolous or malicious
275 collateral criminal proceeding, which is filed after September
276 30, 2004, or who knowingly or with reckless disregard for the
277 truth brought false information or evidence before the court, is
278 subject to disciplinary procedures pursuant to the rules of the
279 Department of Corrections. The court shall issue a written
280 finding and direct that a certified copy be forwarded to the
281 appropriate institution or facility for disciplinary procedures
282 pursuant to the rules of the department as provided in s.
284 Section 6. This act shall take effect July 1, 2019.