FOIA: Illinois Department of Corrections (IDOC)

IDOCThis is CJP’s first major set of FOIA requests to the Illinois Department of Corrections, (IDOC). It is clearly well past time that this institution’s work be opened to the public.

When you take in to account that IDOC incarcerated 38,259 people as of Jan 1, 2020 and that their fiscal year 2019 budget was $1.5 billion you better understand the urgency of opening their data. Both of these numbers are staggering.

IDOC, as were many jails and prisons around the world, became hotspots for significant transmission of the COVID-19 virus. We talked about this topic recently with Jobi Cates, Executive Director of Restore Justice Illinois. You can access our podcast that includes excerpts of this discussion here.

Below is the content of the FOIAs we sent to IDOC today.

To:  Illinois Department of Corrections

Re: Chicago Justice Project FOIA Requests

In accordance with the Illinois Freedom of Information Act, 5 ILCS 140, I request that your office provide the following public records: 

FOIA A

Documents sufficient to show (or from which may be derived), on a facility by facility basis, the aggregate weekly number of visits to inmates, for each of the years from 2000-2020. 

In order to reduce the burden of responding to this FOIA request, in the alternative to producing all such documents, we would accept as a complete response to this FOIA if you simply answered on a facility by facility basis, what was the aggregate weekly number of visits to inmates, for each of the years from 2000-2020.

FOIA B

Documents sufficient to show (or from which may be derived), on a facility by facility basis, the aggregate weekly number of video visits to inmates, for each of the years from 2000-2020. 

In order to reduce the burden of responding to this FOIA request, in the alternative to producing all such documents, we would accept as a complete response to this FOIA if you simply answered on a facility by facility basis, what was the aggregate weekly number of video visits to inmates, for each of the years from 2000-2020.

FOIA C

Documents sufficient to show (or from which may be derived), on a facility by facility basis, the number of inmates who receive at least one visit per year, for each of the years from 2000-2020. 

In order to reduce the burden of responding to this FOIA request, in the alternative to producing all such documents, we would accept as a complete response to this FOIA if you simply answered on a facility by facility basis, what was the number of inmates who receive at least one visit per year, for each of the years from 2000-2020 

FOIA D

Documents sufficient to show (or from which may be derived), on a facility by facility basis, the number of inmates who receive at least one video visit per year, for each of the years from 2000-2020. 

In order to reduce the burden of responding to this FOIA request, in the alternative to producing all such documents, we would accept as a complete response to this FOIA if you simply answered on a facility by facility basis, what was the number of inmates who receive at least one visit per year, for each of the years from 2000-2020.

FOIA E.1

Documents sufficient to show (or from which may be derived), on a facility by facility basis, the number of vending machines in visiting rooms, for each of the years from 2000-2020. 

In order to reduce the burden of responding to this FOIA request, in the alternative to producing all such documents, we would accept as a complete response to this FOIA if you simply answered on a facility by facility basis, what was the number of vending machines in visiting rooms, for each of the years from 2000-2020.

FOIA E.2

Documents sufficient to show (or from which may be derived), on a facility by facility basis, the revenue from vending machines in visiting rooms, for each of the years from 2000-2020. 

In order to reduce the burden of responding to this FOIA request, in the alternative to producing all such documents, we would accept as a complete response to this FOIA if you simply answered on a facility by facility basis, what was the revenue from vending machines in visiting rooms, for each of the years from 2000-2020.

FOIA F

Documents sufficient to show (or from which may be derived), on a facility by facility basis, how and to whom the revenue from vending machines in visiting rooms was disbursed, for each of the years from 2000-2020.  

In order to reduce the burden of responding to this FOIA request, in the alternative to producing all such documents, we would accept as a complete response to this FOIA if you simply answered on a facility by facility basis, how and to whom the revenue from vending machines in visiting rooms was disbursed, for each of the years from 2000-2020. 

FOIA G

All vending contracts, including commissary, by facility or facilities, for the years 2000-2020.   

FOIA H.1

Documents sufficient to show (or from which may be derived), on a facility by facility basis, who were the sources of inmate benefit fund monies and how much did each account for in the aggregate, for each of the years from 2000-2020. 

In order to reduce the burden of responding to this FOIA request, in the alternative to producing all such documents, we would accept as a complete response to this FOIA if you simply answered on a facility by facility basis, who were the sources of inmate benefit fund monies and how much did each account for in the aggregate, for each of the years from 2000-2020.

FOIA H.2

Documents sufficient to show (or from which may be derived), on a facility by facility basis, how and to whom inmate benefit fund monies were disbursed, for each of the years from 2000-2020.

In order to reduce the burden of responding to this FOIA request, in the alternative to producing all such documents, we would accept as a complete response to this FOIA if you simply answered on a facility by facility basis, how and to whom inmate banefit fund monies were disbursed, for each of the years from 2000-2020.

FOIA I

Documents sufficient to show (or from which may be derived), on a facility by facility basis, the aggregate number of grievances, for each of the years from 2000-2020. 

In order to reduce the burden of responding to this FOIA request, in the alternative to producing all such documents, we would accept as a complete response to this FOIA if you simply answered on a facility by facility basis, the aggregate number of grievances by facility, for each of the years from 2000-2020.

FOIA J

Documents sufficient to show (or from which may be derived), on a facility by facility basis, the aggregate number of grievances by type, facility, and month, for each of the years from 2000-2020. 

In order to reduce the burden of responding to this FOIA request, in the alternative to producing all such documents, we would accept as a complete response to this FOIA if you simply answered on a facility by facility basis, the aggregate number of grievances by type, and month, for each of the years from 2000-2020.

FOIA K

Documents sufficient to show (or from which may be derived), on a facility by facility basis, the aggregate types of dispositions of the grievances by type of grievance, and month, for each of the years from 2000-2020. 

In order to reduce the burden of responding to this FOIA request, in the alternative to producing all such documents, we would accept as a complete response to this FOIA if you simply answered on a facility by facility basis, the aggregate types of dispositions of the grievances by type of grievance, and month, for each of the years from 2000-2020.

FOIA L

Documents sufficient to show (or from which may be derived), on a facility by facility basis, the number of inmates either determined to be affiliated with a gang (either by investigation, Internal Affairs, or self-reporting), for each of the years from 2000-2020.

In order to reduce the burden of responding to this FOIA request, in the alternative to producing all such documents, we would accept as a complete response to this FOIA if you simply answered on a facility by facility basis, the number of inmates either determined to be affiliated with a gang (either by investigation, Internal Affairs, or self-reporting), for each of the years from 2000-2020. 

FOIA M

Documents sufficient to show (or from which may be derived), on a facility by facility basis, the aggregate number of inmate gang status changes, for each of the years from 2000-2020.

In order to reduce the burden of responding to this FOIA request, in the alternative to producing all such documents, we would accept as a complete response to this FOIA if you simply answered on a facility by facility basis, the aggregate number of inmate gang status changes, for each of the years from 2000-2020.

FOIA N.1

For the prison stock reports issued by the Illinois Department of Corrections between 2000-2020 please provide the following additional data per individual detailed in those reports 

1. Mittimus

2.  All data related to any individual that was recommitted for a technical violation This data should at a minimum should include:

a.     Date

b.     Technical violation type

c.     Description of violation

FOIA N.2

Documents showing or containing, or raw data in electronic format related to, any individual that was recommitted for a technical violation from 2000-2020.  At a minimum, this data should include:

d.     Date

e.     Technical violation type

f.      Description of violation

g.     Race

h.     Gender

i.      Age

j.      County

FOIA O

Documents showing or detailing, or raw data in electronic format regarding, all exits from your facilities.  At a minimum, this data should include:

1. Exit Mechanism

2. Expected Mandatory Supervised Release (MRS)

3.     Exit Data

4.     Placement type

5.     Earned Discretionary Sentencing Credit (EDSC)

6.     Electronic Detention / Monitoring (ED)

7.     Clemency

8.     Furlough

9.     Transfers

FOIA P

For the years 2019 & 2020 please provide copies of the following public records related to the Illinois Department of Corrections’ response to the COVID-19 pandemic:

1.     Any materials provided to facilities related to early releases

2.     Recommendations on applying sentencing credits

3.     Guidelines or instructions for applying sentencing credit

4.     Determinations on who to release early

5.     What process was used to determine who to release early

6.     Any other materials related to early releases in response to COVID-19

FOIA Q

Documents sufficient to show, or from which can be derived, the data related to discipline from 2000-2020.  At a minimum, this data should include:

1.     aggregate number of infractions by type, facility and year

2.     aggregate number of times discipline was imposed on inmates by infraction type, discipline type, facility, and year

3.     the number of times solitary confinement or administrative segregation was used by facility, offense type, duration, and year

FOIA R

Documents sufficient to show, or from which can be derived, the data related to inmate health care from 2000-2020.  At a minimum, this data should include:

1.     aggregate number requests from inmates by facility and year to see:

a.     medical doctors

b.     mental health specialists

c.     counselors

2.     aggregate number of times by facility and year that inmates are able to see:

a.     medical doctors

b.     mental health specialists

c.     counselors 

3.     aggregate number of times inmates are hospitalized by cause, facility and year. 

FOIA S

Documents sufficient to show, or from which can be derived, the data related to inmate deaths from 2000-2020.  At a minimum, this data should include::

1.     aggregate number of deaths by cause, facility, and year

FOIA T

Copies of prison projections that have been produced by you or any consultants retained by you from the time period of 2000-2020.

FOIA U

Records sufficient to show Your efforts to locate and produce the records requested in FOIAs A-S above. This should include:

  1. Where you searched for responsive Records and Documents.
  2. Who seared for responsive Records and Documents.
  3. Who was requested to produce responsive Records and Documents.
  4. The identify of any Records and Documents that were located but not produced for any reason. 

DEFINITIONS  

“Document” and/or “Documents” means any documents or electronically stored information of any kind—including writings, drawings, graphs, charts, photographs, sound recordings, images, and other data or data compilations—stored in any medium from which information can be obtained either directly or, if necessary, after translation by the responding party into a reasonably usable form.

“You” or “Your” means the Illinois Department of Corrections, and all attorneys, employees, officers, directors, bureaus, offices, divisions or subdivisions of same.

“Inmate” means any inmate or prisoner in Your custody or control.

“Facility” means any penal, correctional, or incarcerative facility maintained, run, or overseen by You, or under Your authority.  This includes privately-run, contracted facilities, if any such facilities exist.

INSTRUCTIONS

If the agency withholds any document or information pertinent to the requests made herein, please identify the document or information in as much detail as is possible, and detail in specific language why each document or piece of information is being withheld.

If any information requested herein is withheld on the basis of a claim of privilege or other protection as material prepared in anticipation of litigation or trial, then that claim shall be made expressly in a writing that describes the nature of the Documents, Communications, or Things not produced or disclosed in a manner that will enable us to assess the applicability of the privilege or protection. With regard to each claim of privilege or protection, the following information should be provided in the response or the objection:

(a) the type of Document, e.g., letter or memorandum;

(b) general subject matter of the Document;

(c) the date of the Document;

(d) such other information as is sufficient to identify the Document for a subpoena duces tecum, including, where appropriate, the author, addressee, and any other recipient of the Document, and, where not apparent, the relationship of the author, addressee, and any other recipient to each other; and

(e) the nature of the privilege or protection;

(f) if applicable, the litigation or trial of which he document was created in anticipation.

If any Document identified herein has been lost, discarded, or destroyed, each such Document should be identified as completely as possible, including as to each such Document, its date, general nature (e.g., letter, memorandum, telegram, telex, photograph, computer printout), subject matter, each author or originator, each person indicated as an addressee or copy recipient, and its former custodian(s). In addition, as to each such Document, the following information shall be supplied:

(a) date of disposal, loss, or destruction;

(b) manner of disposal, loss, or destruction;

(c) reason for disposal or destruction, or any explanation of loss;

(d) persons authorizing the disposal or destruction;

(e) persons having knowledge of the disposal, destruction, or loss; and

(f) persons who destroyed, lost, or disposed or the Document or Thing.

I look forward to hearing from you in writing within five working days, as required by the Act 5 ILCS 140(3).  Please direct all questions or responses to this FOIA request to this email address by responding to this email. I can be reached at tsiska@chicagojustice.org Tracy Siska

Updates

7/15 – Response R attached.

Siska, Tracy response R

7/15 – Response C attached

Siska, Tracy Response C FOIA C – Number of visit by year

FOIA C – Number of visit by year

7/15 – Response to Request A

Siska, Tracy response A FOIA A – Weekly Visits for Each Faclity

FOIA A – Weekly Visits for Each Faclity

7/15 – Response to Request U

Siska, Tracy response U

7/15 – Response T attached

Siska, Tracy response T

7/15 – Response G attached

Contract – Vending Stateville MOU_Redacted Mou (Vending Machine) for Big Muddy signed_Redacted MOU (Vending Machine) for Lincoln signed_Redacted Siska, Tracy response G

Mou (Vending Machine) for Big Muddy signed_Redacted

MOU (Vending Machine) for Lincoln signed_Redacted

Siska, Tracy response G

7/15 – Response to Request F

Siska, Tracy response F

7/15 – Response K attached

Siska, Tracy response K

7/15 – Response to J

Siska, Tracy response J

7/15 – Response to I

Siska, Tracy response I

7/15 – Response to E1 & E2

Siska, Tracy response E1 & E2

7/15 – See attached in response to Request Q.

Siska, Tracy Q response

DTS FOIA Count of Offenses by Year Facility

7/14 – A response to requests B & D are enclosed.

GTL_VisitsByInmateAndFacility_2000_to_Present Siska, Tracy response B & D

Siska, Tracy response B & D

Response to H.1 and H.2 attached.

IBF 7-25-05 thru present Scanned from a Xerox Multifunction Printer

Scanned from a Xerox Multifunction Printer

Response to Request M attached.

Siska, Tracy response M

Response to request L attached:

Siska, Tracy response L

Response to request P

IDOC_Scanned from a Xerox Multifunction Printer

7/13 – Extension Request:

IDOC_Siska, Tracy extension

Author: Tracy Siska

Tracy Siska is the Founder and Executive Director of the Chicago Justice Project.

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