I have lived in Arkansas my entire life. I have a brain tumor that sometimes causes psuedoseizures. This is not only medically documented, but I also wear a medical bracelet stating this and carry medication with me at all times for it. I have been incarcerated in Benton County a couple times for minor misdemeanor offenses. Every time I have been incarcerated in Benton Co. jail I have not only failed to receive proper medical care, but also witnessed it as well. Last time I was there I felt a seizure coming on. Not only had I provided my medication to the jail, I also informed the arresting officer of the condition as well. I also notified several of the jailers that I needed my medication ASAP and was going to have a seizure. The jail nurse was present and had my medication in hand when my seizure took place. The jailers are obviously not properly trained to handle basic emergency medical needs what so ever. My medication was denied and I was relocated while seizing to a isolation room and laid on the concrete floor on my back and left unattended for the duration of the seizure. This is in no way, shape, or form proper handling or procedure for medical treatment of a person experiencing a seizure. I could have cracked my head open, asphyxiated, or even died due to the neglect and lack of treatment I received. If the staff cannot properly handle even the most basic procedures to ensure proper medical care and safety of inmates then they should provide acceptable medical staff, but not even the jail nurse that was present handled the situation acceptably. I am not sure if it is due to lack of knowledge and training or if it just blatant neglect. Either way this experience is completely unjust and an obvious violation of the basic rights clearly posted in all jails. I am only sharing this experience in hopes that jailers be required not just offered proper medical training to ensure the proper safety of our citizens while incarcerated. This is a serious violation of civil rights that are supposed to be provided to all inmates. I attempted to research similar cases reported in our area and was unable to find actually statistics for this injustice. Almost every report I found only offered excuses for the resulting deaths due to improper medical treatment. Just as any doctor or regular citizen is held responsible for this neglect and processed accordingly to the law, so should our justice system.
So I received a personal message from 'safran' stating, "Wouldn't it just be safer to stop getting arrested?
I agree, medical care in jail is horrid, but now that this has been proven to you - at least once - I think you have some responsibility too."
My response to this absurd comment was, "Absolutely not! We are innocent until proven guilty and regardless still have civil rights that should be properly met in accordance with the law and our constitution. So according to your 'logic' even if someone is jailed for a crime they are later proven innocent of it is okay with you that our civil rights be violated when the penal systems our funded by our tax dollars. So individual cities should be aloud to enforce the law as they see fit and we citizens should continue to pay for these institutions and salary to the officers that can uphold the law as they see fit?! You are absolutely fucking delusional! Just because someone is incarcerated does not make them any less of a citizen that deserves all constitutional rights. Are you even a natural citizen of the US?! How the hell can I take more responsibility for proper medical being administered?? I wear am emergency medical notification bracelet, carry my medications, and not only informed officers of my condition, but several jailers and the actual on staff nurse as well. Honestly it is alarming to me that the jailers and on staff nurse are not required to know even basic first aid. So if they are not required to be properly trained to administer even the most simple first aid or medical care how is it a citizens responsibility to provide or administer their own medication or medical care?!"
Inmates are supposed to have access to medical care, sadly, that isn't usually how it goes Can't be an inmate w/o first being arrested and convicted, and that in no way should mean that necessary medications be withheld. Have you consulted an attorney about filing suit? IMHO, you most definitely should have been given your medically prescribed meds whether you were an inmate or not, why your were an inmate has absolutely no bearing on the fact that you were in danger of being seriously injured or dying without them.
What kind of government does Benton County have? Specifically, who controls the funding for the jail? You could ask to get on their calendar.
From all I've heard, elected officials are fascinated to hear real-life stories from voters. You've got a heck of a story to tell. Might be the most interesting thing the county councilman or whatever has heard all month.
Give Disability Rights Arkansas a call. Not many people know this, but the "protection and advocacy" organizations have the right to protect and advocate for institutionalized people. They also have the legal right to come into the mental hospital or correctional facility. They also have the legal right to bring and use recording equipment.
Not every P&A organization cares about prisons and jails. No guarantees. Worth trying.
And, disenchat? I respect you for wanting to fix the problem for everybody instead of just avoiding it for yourself.
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