The U.S. Department of Justice is asking a federal judge to force the state of Georgia to make changes in its
mental health care system.
The department went to court on Wednesday after negotiations
with state officials stalled.
The federal government sued the state in January 2009, saying the state's mental health care violated patients'
civil rights. The department complained that the state had failed to address inadequate treatment, excessive use
of restraint and sedatives to control patients and inadequate medical and nursing care.
During negotiations, state officials complained about the demand for more community services. They say the
Justice Department was trying to expand the scope of the original settlement, which covered only state hospitals.
State officials say they hope talks will resume.