Audio

Coronavirus Guidance for Prisons and Jails

The Vera Institute of Justice is acutely aware of—and increasingly concerned about—the safety and well-being of an often-overlooked population: the millions living in America’s prisons, jails, and detention centers.

Unable to practice social distancing or to easily access soap or hand sanitizer (which is still considered contraband in most prisons, due to its alcohol content), people behind bars live in settings that are, tragically, ideal incubators for the spread of COVID-19. For the elderly and those who have compromised immune systems the risk of succumbing to the virus is exponentially greater.

Listen in as Dr. Leah Pope; New York Times Magazine staff writer Emily Bazelon; Dr. Homer Venters, former Chief Medical Officer of the NYC Correctional Health Services; and Vera’s Vice President and Research Director Jim Parsons share what we've learned so far and outline the steps we'll take in the coming weeks.