NEW YORK— A group of Westchester County Jail inmates are suing the county for $500 million, claiming in a federal lawsuit that the jail’s refusal to let them use dental floss has ruined their teeth.
In a 25-page lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court in Manhattan, Santiago Gomez, 26, the lead plaintiff in the suit who is being held on a gun charge, chides his jailors for violating the prisoners’ civil rights by “not allowing inmates access to dental floss while being aware that failure to use causes cavities.”
“We feel that the Westchester County Department of Corrections is depriving inmates of the use of dental floss, which is causing us cavities,” Gomez told The Journal News/LoHud.com in a telephone interview today. “They recognize the importance of it, that you have to floss, in the regulation manual. They clearly state if you don’t floss you’re going to get cavities.”