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Mediation Up Next for Federal Lawsuit Filed by Former CVTC Patient and Family

Tuesday, April, 21, 2020

A judge has referred the lawsuit filed by Alisha Gupta and her family against Central Virginia Training Center to mediation. The trial date was originally scheduled for April 2, but the judge has postponed that to attempt mediation during the month.


Gupta was the last patient to be transferred out of the training center at the beginning of April. She is severely disabled.


Gupta had been a resident at the center since 2003. She followed a natural, organic diet based on her Jain Hindu beliefs while living at the center and her foods were prepared by hand and fed to her via a feeding tube. Gupta is now living at the Hiram Davis Medical Center in Petersburg.


According to the lawsuit, Gupta’s family learned that the Virginia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services planned to move the patient to the alternate care facility in 2019. The family also learned at this time that Gupta’s diet had been changed without them knowing.


The lawsuit further claims, “Upon information and belief, the Gupta family believes that DBHDS and HDMC intend to abandon the present diet and to substitute a synthetic diet to be administered by a feeding machine. A plan containing any of these elements violates Alisha’s religious beliefs and the beliefs of the Gupta family."


Dr. Daniel Carey, Secretary of Health and Human Resources, Dr. S. Hughes Melton, the Commissioner of DBHDS, Dick Roberts, former Director of CVTC, Governor Ralph Northam, and the Commonwealth of Virginia are all named in the lawsuit.