Judge rules segregating HIV inmates violates federal law

U.S.District Judge Myron Thompson ruled Friday in favor of inmates who filed suitto end the longstanding practice of segregating prison inmates who are HIV positive.{}Thompson says the state's policy violates federal disabilities law.

Thompsonsays the state and inmate attorneys will have time to propose a way to bringstate prisons into compliance with his order.

TheAmerican Civil Liberties Union calls the decision "historic." Thestate has yet to comment on the ruling.

Alabamaand South Carolina are the only states that segregate HIV-positive prisoners.

There isone part of the suit that Judge Thompson must still rule on, and that is the partof the suit involving work-release inmates.