Physical Injury Requirement: Under the PLRA, prisoners can be raped and sexually assaulted
and not have access to the range of remedies available to most civil rights plaintiffs because some courts say they’ve suffered no “physical injury.” Other forms of cruel and unusual punishment, such as grossly unsanitary conditions and cavalier disregard of prisoners’ medical needs, also do not meet the “physical injury” requirement for such claims.
• Physical Injury Requirement: Many constitutional violations do not result in physical injuries. As a result of the PLRA’s “physical injury” requirement, courts, for example, often deny prisoners remedies for violations of their First Amendment rights to freedom of religion.
• Exhaustion Requirement: The PLRA’s exhaustion provisions require prisoners to exhaust their
facilities’ grievance process no matter how legitimate the reasons for failing to follow grievance procedures might be.
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