Litigation

Settlement of Foster Youth Lawsuit – March 23, 2020

Disability Rights New Mexico has been a named plaintiff and part of the litigation team in the Kevin S. lawsuit to secure acxcess to behavioral health treatment for kids in the custody of the state of New Mexico. Collectively we reached an innovative settlement with the Children, Youth and Families Department (CYFD) and Human Services Department (HSD). DRNM is pleased to see that the goals in the agreement include increasing collaboration among child-serving agencies led by CYFD and HSD. The commitment to building a coordinated system of care that includes a wide array of services to eligible children in state custody throughout New Mexico is vital to their well-being. We hope that this will result in a statewide system which is necessary to ensure that all children in state custody and their families have prompt access to necessary services regardless of where they live. More information can be found at the link below.


New York Times Article:  New Mexico Agrees to Revamp its ‘Broken’ Foster Care System

State of New Mexico Press Release

Jackson Lawsuit Enters New Phase with Settlement Agreement – November 18, 2019

The Jackson class-action lawsuit was filed by Disability Rights New Mexico (DRNM) and others in 1987, to protect the rights of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities who were then institutionalized.  Since that time the state institutions closed, and a robust community-based system has grown.  Nonetheless, the lawsuit has remained open and active to ensure that the class members have sufficient home- and community-based services to protect their health and safety.  In the spring of 2019 the parties were able to negotiate a Settlement Agreement intended to end the lawsuit.  The judge approved and entered this Settlement Agreement as an order of the court on June 21, 2019.  The State has 18 months to comply with its remaining obligations to end the lawsuit.

Workers with Disabilities Sue For Fair Wages – August 1, 2019

Disability Rights New Mexico, as part of a coalition with other non-profit organizations and law firms working on economic justice and employment rights issues, has filed a lawsuit against Adelante Development Center, Inc. (“Adelante”), over Adelante’s its illegal, abusive, and pervasive payment of subminimum wages to its employees with disabilities.  The lawsuit asserts that Adelante has illegally paid its workers less than New Mexico’s and Albuquerque’s minimum wage to hundreds of employees for many years.

DRNM Lawsuit: DoH Must License Boarding Homes – February 23, 2018

In litigation filed in state district court in Santa Fe, Disability Rights New Mexico (DRNM) is seeking a court order requiring the Department of Health (DoH) to license boarding homes, which often serve persons with mental illness or other disabilities but are currently unregulated.  For decades, the state of New Mexico had licensing regulations and requirements in place for boarding homes, but several years ago DoH unilaterally scrapped them.  DRNM has obtained a temporary order and will seek to make the order permanent, in which case DoH would have to promptly establish and implement licensure requirements.  DRNM on-site visits, our death investigation a few years ago, numerous complaints we have received from residents and guardians, and a series of reports published in the Albuquerque Journal have all raised serious concerns about the conditions in many of these homes.