“Employee” means any staff member, an employee of a contract agency, an independent contractor, or a volunteer of the department or an institution.
“Good cause” means substantial grounds, justification, or reason to take a certain action as determined by the examiner.
“Inmate complaint review system” or “ICRS” means the process by which complaints filed by inmates of adult correctional institutions are investigated and resolved.
“Institution” means a correctional institution or correctional facility defined under s. 302.01
“Institution complaint examiner” or “ICE” means the person or persons at each institution designated by the warden to process, investigate, and make recommendations on complaints filed under this chapter.
“Reviewing authority” means a person who is authorized to review and decide an inmate complaint.
“Secretary” means the secretary of the department or designee.
“Staff member” or “staff” means a person employed by the department as a permanent, project, or limited term employee.
“Warden” means the warden, superintendent, or designee.
DOC 310.03 History
History: CR 16-054: cr., Register March 2018, No. 747, eff. 4-1-18; correction in (20) made under s. 35.17, Stats, Register March 2018, No. 747. DOC 310.04
DOC 310.04 Inmate complaint review system. DOC 310.04(1)(1)
The department shall maintain an inmate complaint review system that shall be accessible to all inmates in institutions. The department shall do all of the following:
Provide access to written notification of the complaint procedures to inmates.
Provide each inmate written or oral explanation of the complaint procedures.
Provide an inmate the opportunity to ask and have questions answered relating to the complaint procedure.
Not subject an inmate to retaliation for participation in the ICRS.
Allow an inmate to pursue a complaint of retaliation through the ICRS.
Inappropriate use of the ICRS per 310.07 (4) may be subject to discipline under ch. DOC 303
The warden shall designate an employee to function as an institution complaint examiner or to assist in the process.
DOC 310.04 History
History: CR 16-054: cr., Register March 2018, No. 747, eff. 4-1-18. DOC 310.05
DOC 310.05 Exhaustion of administrative remedies.
Before an inmate may commence a civil action or special proceedings, the inmate shall exhaust all administrative remedies the department has promulgated by rule.
DOC 310.05 History
History: CR 16-054: cr., Register March 2018, No. 747, eff. 4-1-18. DOC 310.06
DOC 310.06 Scope of complaint review system. DOC 310.06(1)(1)
An inmate may use the ICRS to raise issues regarding policies, rules, living conditions, or employee actions that personally affect the inmate or institution environment.
An inmate may raise issues, including civil rights claims, through the ICRS regarding classification, disciplinary actions, administrative confinement, or request for qualified leave, and decisions regarding requests to authorize new religious practice or religious property only after exhausting any of the following, as appropriate:
A review process designated by the department for the request of new religious practice or property.
An inmate may not use the ICRS to challenge any of the following:
DOC 310.06 History
History: CR 16-054: cr., Register March 2018, No. 747, eff. 4-1-18; correction in (3) (a) made under s. 35.17, Stats., Register March 2018 No. 747. DOC 310.07(1)
Prior to filing a formal complaint, an inmate shall attempt to resolve the issue by following the designated process specific to the subject of the complaint. The ICE may request inmates to provide evidence of having followed the specified process.
An inmate shall file a complaint within 14 days after the occurrence giving rise to the complaint. At the discretion of the ICE, a late complaint may be accepted for good cause. An inmate shall request to file a late complaint in the written complaint and explicitly provide the reason for the late filing.
Each complaint shall meet all of the following requirements:
Be submitted on a complaint form provided by the department.
Be filed only under the name by which the inmate was committed to the department or the legal name granted by a court.
Provide relevant supporting documentation, which may be accepted at the discretion of the ICE.
A complaint will not be processed and a referral for disciplinary action may occur in accordance with ch. DOC 303
if the complaint contains any of the following:
Obscene, profane, abusive, or threatening language unless such language is necessary to describe the factual basis of the complaint.
Each complaint may contain only one clearly identified issue.
A complaint must contain sufficient information for the department to investigate and decide the complaint.
An inmate may not file more than one complaint per calendar week except that any of the following are not subject to the filing restrictions contained in this paragraph:
Complaints regarding the inmate's health and personal safety.
An inmate shall submit a signed complaint by placing it in a receptacle designated for complaints or by submitting it to the ICE office through institution or USPS mail.
If an inmate is transferred after an incident but before filing a complaint, the inmate shall file a complaint related to the incident at the currently assigned institution. The ICE shall refer the complaint to the ICE at the appropriate institution for investigation and reviewing authority decision. If the transfer is to a contracted facility, the inmate shall file the complaint with the institution where the issue arose.
Inmates shall file complaints with the institution where the incident occurred.
The ICE may waive any requirements under this section for good cause.
DOC 310.07 History
History: CR 16-054: cr., Register March 2018, No. 747, eff. 4-1-18. DOC 310.08
DOC 310.08 PREA complaint procedure.
An inmate may file a complaint alleging sexual abuse using the procedures under this chapter. The following provisions apply to complaints alleging sexual abuse or sexual harassment:
Notwithstanding s. DOC 310.07 (2)
, an inmate may file a complaint regarding sexual abuse or sexual harassment at any time. If a portion of the complaint alleges an issue that does not relate to sexual abuse or sexual harassment, the time limits under s. DOC 310.07
Notwithstanding s. DOC 310.07 (1)
, an inmate is not required to attempt to resolve the issue with the staff member who is the subject of the complaint or to file a complaint regarding sexual abuse or sexual harassment with the staff member who is the subject of the complaint. The inmate may use an alternative method of filing, including submission of the complaint directly to the warden.
Complaints filed under this section will be referred for a PREA investigation. Department policy shall address the requirements that investigations regarding allegations of sexual abuse or sexual harassment be completed within established time frames.
Third parties, including fellow inmates, staff members, family members, attorneys, and outside advocates, shall be permitted to assist an inmate in filing a request for administrative remedies relating to allegations of sexual abuse or sexual harassment and shall also be permitted to file such requests on behalf of inmates. Requests for administrative remedies filed under this section will be referred for a PREA investigation.
Emergency grievance procedures for complaints alleging a substantial risk of imminent sexual abuse or sexual harassment will be handled in the following manner:
The inmate may contact any staff member who is not the subject of the allegation for immediate corrective action.
The inmate may file a complaint. Complaints collected under s. DOC 310.08
shall be immediately forwarded to the warden to determine if immediate action is warranted.
Reports of substantial risk of imminent sexual abuse or sexual harassment outside of the complaint process under this chapter shall be immediately forwarded to the warden to determine if immediate action is warranted.
Further response will be in accordance with department policy.
The warden may discipline an inmate for filing a complaint related to alleged sexual abuse or sexual harassment only if the warden demonstrates that the inmate filed the complaint in bad faith.
Time frames are waived for PREA related complaints, this does not apply to PREA related complaint appeals.
DOC 310.08 History
History: CR 16-054: cr., Register March 2018, No. 747, eff. 4-1-18. DOC 310.09(1)
An inmate may appeal the reviewing authority decision to the CCE within 14 days after the date of the decision or if the inmate does not receive a decision 45 days after the date the ICE enters the complaint.
Appeals shall meet all of the following requirements: