is termed a "banquet" or a "dinner" to which the individual prisoner can invite his own guests and relatives presents the identical security problems for prison officials. Such problems are lessened when the group invites religious or community leaders to attend religious celebrations and there is no limit to the number of these per year.
We hold as a matter of law that the Graterford officials satisfied their burden of production. The one banquet per year per group policy was justified by these officials by reason of internal security. The restriction is reasonably related to a legitimate goal; it is neither "arbitrary or purposeless." Wolfish, supra 441 U.S. at 539. We must defer to the expertise of the defendants, Pell, supra; we cannot say their views are not "arguably correct." Jones v. North Carolina Prisoners' Labor Union, 433 U.S. 119, 127, 53 L. Ed. 2d 629, 97 S. Ct. 2532 (1977). Plaintiffs have not satisfied their burden on summary judgment under St. Claire. They made no effort to prove the policies unreasonable, exaggerated or insincere. Thus, we cannot find that their free exercise rights were violated. See, St. Claire, supra at 116.
Plaintiffs also raise an equal protection claim that Black Muslims are granted privileges for religious celebrations which Spanish speaking prisoners are denied. But Muslims, as a recognized inmate group, are allowed one banquet per year just as plaintiffs are.
The Muslims may choose to celebrate a religious holiday at their banquet. If plaintiffs prefer to celebrate National Puerto Rican Week by banquet, denying them an additional banquet with relatives on Three Kings Day is not a denial of equal protection. Plaintiffs could choose to have their banquet with outsiders attending on Three Kings Day in connection with the religious observance. It is the claim for a banquet in celebration of Three Kings Day and National Puerto Rican Week that gives rise to the present controversy. Thus, this claim fails.
Because no constitutional rights were violated, plaintiffs' § 1985 claim that the defendants conspired to violate such rights also fails. Kauffman v. Moss, 420 F.2d 1270 (3d Cir.), cert. denied, 400 U.S. 846, 27 L. Ed. 2d 84, 91 S. Ct. 93 (1970); accord, People ex rel. Snead v. Kirkland, 462 F. Supp. 914, 922 (E.D.Pa. 1978). Neither was class-based invidiously discriminatory animus, necessary to state a § 1985(3) claim, averred. See, Griffin v. Breckenridge, 403 U.S. 88, 91 S. Ct. 1790, 29 L. Ed. 2d 338 (1971). Section 1986 violations depend on a pre-existing § 1985 violation. Having failed to state or prove a § 1985 violation, plaintiffs' § 1986 claim necessarily fails. Rogin v. Bensalem Township, 616 F.2d 680, 696-97 (3d Cir. 1980), cert. denied, 450 U.S. 1029, 68 L. Ed. 2d 223, 101 S. Ct. 1737 (1981).
Whether or not there is a National Puerto Rican Week banquet itself raises no free exercise of religion claim, even though having a National Puerto Rican Week banquet precludes having a Three Kings Day banquet because of the one banquet per year per group regulation. However, plaintiffs raise an equal protection claim concerning the denial of their request for a National Puerto Rican Week banquet.
Superintendent Cuyler averred that plaintiffs' banquet request was refused because it was improperly made. (Cuyler Affidavit at para. 3) but, on the record herein, this is not correct
with regard to the National Puerto Rican Week banquet. The initial request for a September, 1976 banquet was made on July 14, 1976 which met the requirement of 60 days advance notice mandated by prison guidelines proposed on September 9, 1976. (Pabon deposition at 20, 38, 39; Sims Affidavit, Attachment I).
Indeed, in Sims' memorandum proposing those guidelines, he stated that a "Latin Prisoner's Rights Organization's" banquet request had been rejected not because of procedural deficiencies but because of "the amount of staff time involved and potential security problems." (Sims Affidavit, Attachment I).
Sims further stated:
. . . These rejections have been based on the amount of staff time involved and potential security problems. The decision was made that any group having a banquet in the past would be permitted to hold a banquet annually, but other groups would not be permitted to do so. In the long term, I do not see this as an equitable and realistic decision in that it is a 'grandfather clause' situation.
The exclusion of Spanish speaking prisoners from the opportunity to participate in banquets simply because they had not requested banquets in the past is indeed inequitable and, perhaps, irrational.
However, we need not reach plaintiffs' equal protection argument because the issue is moot.
It was undisputed that Spanish speaking prisoners, a recognized inmate group, are now entitled to one banquet per year. It was uncontested that the "banquet" request procedures set out, supra at n.8, are now followed by Graterford officials. Julio Ruiz, a Spanish speaking teacher at the school, averred that he knew the procedures and was willing to assist prisoners in properly requesting a banquet. (Ruiz Affidavit at paras. 1-7, Paper No. 35.). Plaintiffs have participated in banquets subsequently. (Pabon deposition at 48-49). We find that plaintiffs' present ability to enjoy one banquet per year is the same as that of other recognized inmate groups. Therefore, plaintiffs' prayer for equitable relief on this issue is moot. The complaint did not allege malice or bad faith, and there is no support for the award of punitive damages for which plaintiffs also pray.
See Cochetti v. Desmond, 572 F.2d 102, 106 (3d Cir. 1978).
IV. FAILURE TO PROVIDE COURSES IN SPANISH
Plaintiff's first, second, third and fifth causes of action against defendants Cuyler, Lewis, and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania relate to courses at Graterford taught only in the English language. Plaintiff alleges that Graterford's education program, which includes both academic and vocational courses, is intended to meet the needs of the English speaking prisoners only. (Complaint paras. 14-15). Plaintiff claims this violates a right to be free of cruel and unusual punishment, a right to equal protection of the law, and civil rights protected by 42 U.S.C. § 1983, § 1985, and § 1986.
The facts of record are clear and undisputed. The school programs at Graterford include a vocational program, an adult basic education program and a G.E.D. program for attaining a high school equivalency diploma. (Lewis deposition at 18-19). Also offered by the prison is a course entitled "English As A Second Language" ("E.S.L.") for those prisoners whose primary language is Spanish. (Lewis Affidavit para. 7, Exhibit IV to Paper No. 51; see, Pabon deposition at 35; Martinez deposition at 61-62; Burgos deposition at 80). Upon the arrival of new prisoners the educational program is described in Spanish for Spanish speaking prisoners. (Lewis deposition at 23-28). English and Spanish notices of course offerings are placed on the bulletin boards in each cell block. (Lewis deposition at 37). A Spanish speaking prisoner can take any class he wishes for which there is an opening; enrollment is determined on a first come, first served basis. He may be told to take E.S.L. by an instructor if his lack of proficiency in English is hurting him in other classes. (Lewis Affidavit paras. 9, 10, 13).
Prisoners who effectively speak only Spanish comprise approximately 3% of the Graterford inmate population.
(Lewis deposition at 26). Defendants contend that limited funds are made available by the state for the educational programs and that a full dual language program for the relatively small number of these Spanish speaking prisoners cannot be provided within these budget constraints. (Lewis Affidavit para. 6). This statement is uncontradicted.
A. Cruel and Unusual Punishment
The situation here complained of does not approach punishment which is prohibited by the Eighth Amendment; that is, "punishments which, although not physically barbarous, 'involve the unnecessary and wanton infliction of pain,' . . . or are grossly disproportionate to the severity of the crime . . ." Rhodes v. Chapman, 452 U.S. 337, 101 S. Ct. 2392, 69 L. Ed. 2d 59 (U.S.1981) (citation omitted) (double-celling is not cruel and unusual punishment). Plaintiffs here seek a bilingual education program. Whatever the merits of that desire, its denial does not constitute a condition of prison life which is cruel or unusual punishment. "The failure of prison authorities to afford inmates rehabilitative programs does not constitute cruel and unusual punishment." Padgett v. Stein, 406 F. Supp. 287, 296 (M.D.Pa. 1975); accord Wojtczak v. Cuyler, 480 F. Supp. 1288, 1303 (E.D.Pa. 1979) (denial of employment); United States ex rel Hoss v. Cuyler, 452 F. Supp. 256, 283 (E.D.Pa. 1978).
Moreover, while rehabilitation is one of the primary functions of the penal system, Pell, supra 417 U.S. at 822-23, "prison inmates have no constitutional right to rehabilitation programs." Hluchan v. Fauver, 480 F. Supp. 103, 108 (D.N.J. 1979); accord Padgett, supra at 296-297. The failure to provide rehabilitation programs in prison is constitutionally unobjectionable.
See, J. Gobert and N. Cohen, Rights of Prisoners 342-43 (1981) and cases cited therein. We recognize that lack of rehabilitative programs may violate the Eighth Amendment in certain special circumstances in combination with other institutional conditions, see, e.g., Finney v. Arkansas Board of Correction, 505 F.2d 194 (8th Cir. 1974) (rehabilitation programs not generally available, little recreation time and inmates subjected to physical abuse if work fell below arbitrary standards), but on the undisputed facts there are no such circumstances here. As to the Eighth Amendment claim defendants' motion for summary judgment will be granted.
B. Equal Protection
Plaintiffs also claim that offering courses only in English constitutes disparate treatment of prisoners speaking only Spanish who are in effect deprived of various educational and vocational programs in violation of the Fourteenth Amendment.
The initial inquiry under an equal protection analysis is the level of scrutiny by which the actions of prison officials are reviewed. Only those classifications which disadvantage a "suspect class" or that impinge upon the exercise of a fundamental right are treated as "presumptively invidious." Plyler v. Doe, 457 U.S. 202, , 102 S. Ct. 2382, 72 L. Ed. 2d 786, 50 U.S.L.W. 4650, 4654 (filed June 15, 1982). Such classifications require the state to demonstrate that they have been precisely tailored to serve a compelling governmental interest. Id. If classifications do not relate to suspect classes or impinge on fundamental rights, we need seek only the assurance that they bear some fair relationship to a legitimate public purpose. Id. We find neither a suspect class nor a fundamental right involved in this case.
Discrimination on the basis of national origin involves a suspect classification requiring strict scrutiny in an equal protection analysis. See, Hernandez v. Texas, 347 U.S. 475, 98 L. Ed. 866, 74 S. Ct. 667 (1954). However, the facts here do not state such a claim. The disparate treatment complained of depends upon the language spoken by the prisoner. Any non-English speaking prisoner is affected whatever his national origin. By plaintiffs' own estimates as many as 20 of the Spanish prisoners (30-50), including Pabon and Martinez, speak English. Despite the national heritage of these prisoners, the non-availability of Spanish language classes does not affect them adversely.
In Guadalupe Organization, Inc. v. Tempe Elementary School, 587 F.2d 1022, 1026 n.3 (9th Cir. 1978), the court, holding that public school students had no Fourteenth Amendment right to a bilingual/bicultural education, stated:
Appellants make no argument that appellees have made a 'suspect classification' that would necessitate a more stringent analysis. Inasmuch as appellees only differentiate explicitly among students with respect to the provision of remedial English instruction, no such claim is possible.