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Suit Wants High-Security Wing At State Hospital To Stay Open

A lawsuit on behalf of patients was filed Thursday seeking to prevent the closure of a high-security unit at the Connecticut mental hospital that treats those acquitted of crimes by reason of insanity. Lawyers with the advocacy groups Disability Rights Connecticut and the Connecticut Legal Rights Project allege that closing the unit at Whiting Forensic Hospital in Middletown would create “likely and imminent irreparable harm” to patients, who they say will be transferred to units that cannot provide the care they need.

The state recently decided to close the unit, one of six high-security units in the hospital, and consolidate other services amid staff shortages, according to the lawsuit. The state Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services, which runs Whiting, said it could not comment on pending litigation.

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