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Lawyers sue Michigan Department of Corrections to restore prison visiting hours

The director of Michigan State University's Civil Rights Clinic is suing the state Department of Corrections in federal court.

Dan Manville says the DOC is violating some lawyers' Constitutional rights by limiting when they can visit prisoners.

Manville says the new visiting hours are three days a week from 2:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

"Now under this present procedure, you're having to drive at least two or three days to do the same thing you used to be able to do in one day," Manville says.

He says some lawyers have clients at several locations around the state.

The suit asks that lawyers be allowed to see inmates on any day between 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

A Department of Corrections spokesman says the state cut back prison visiting hours to save money.

Manville also says some prisons no longer provide separate rooms in which lawyers can meet their clients.
"Where's the confidentiality?" Manville asks.  "I'm sitting right next to other inmates, family members, and my client  is supposed to discuss their case with me?"