COVID-19 Risks Prompt Some California Counties to Ease Jail Populations


Is endemic in our society how can we really address all these issues about equity and about violence and about safety this is a moment of reckoning and I think we need to respond to prisons and southern California have hundreds of coronavirus infections each inmates at San Quentin want to prevent that from happening in the bay area prison they say there's already been a spike in covert infections one hundred and twenty one inmates were transferred there from the California institution for men in Chino California on may thirtieth stock visibility is known as a hotbed for coronavirus with nearly five hundred in the infections and fifteen deaths San Quentin is now seeing a rise in cases thirty three to date Kerry Reid a current inmate in San Quentin the certain facilities like the each unit are operating at two hundred percent capacity the overcrowding make social distancing impossible he says the dangers posed by the lack of social distancing and access to personal protective equipment infringes on his constitutional rights right the right privacy I can search any time in your life I am subject teacher or not right right we've called usual punishment you're not being given is right under your psychological difficult one that okay okay overcrowding was a problem in prisons before the pandemic it is not the main cause of the spread of the virus to inmates Weicker says prison capacity would need to be reduced to seventy percent to be able to safely social distance which is impossible and current conditions thirty five hundred inmates were released at the start of the pandemic earlier this month governor Gavin Newsom announced he will start releasing inmates within a hundred and eighty days of their release date but resigned an inmate at San Quentin says it's not enough they we critics also get real and we don't collect January but we don't focus so a lot of it the coalition is calling on the governor to approve the release of inmates over the age of fifty those who have a low risk of re offending and those who have been incarcerated multiple years without disciplinary action prison inmates at San Quentin are also demanding widespread testing for everyone living and working in the prison statewide nearly three hundred prison guards have also tested positive for the virus they're also demanding prison staff remain stationed and one part of the present but the state stop transferring inmates from prison to prison during the pandemic and for greater access to hygiene supplies

Coming up next