Carter v. Rennessanice [sic] Men's Shelter

Civil Rights

New York Law Journal


Judge Brian Cogan

Carter, who purportedly has schizophrenia, was housed at Brooklyn's Renaissance Shelter in and the New York City Department of Homeless Services' Bellevue Men's Shelter in Manhattan. His pro se complaint against the two shelters—as well as Renaissance's operator SCO Family Services and security provider FJC Security Services—and individual employees, alleged violation of Americans with Disabilities Act and the Fourteenth Amendment's due process and equal protection clauses. Despite dismissing suit for failure to state a claim, the court provided Carter 20 days to amend his complaint. In dismissing his 42 USC §1983 claims against Renaissance, SCO Family Services and FJC, the court—citing American Mfrs. Mut. Ins. v. Sullivan, Rendell-Baker v. Kohn and Payton v. Rush-Presbyterian-St. Lukes Med. Ctr.—found them to be private organizations that did not perform a public function sufficient to turn them, or their employees, into state actors for purposes of §1983 liability. The court also noted that city agencies are not generally suable agencies. Further, Carter failed to allege that any injury was caused by any policy or custom of the city, as required for municipal liability under Monell v. Dep't of Social Servs.

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