Rikers COVID-19 Outbreak Called ‘Public Health Disaster’

In just 12 days, confirmed cases at the Rikers Island jail complex in New York have soared from one to nearly 200, according to Ross MacDonald, the facility’s chief physician. He warned that it is “unlikely” they will be able to stop the growth, predicting that 20 percent of those infected will need hospital treatment. He called for the immediate release of incarcerees.

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‘Lower Level’ of COVID-19 Health Care Warned for Kids in Custody

As more young people are being released from custody in response to fears about their vulnerability to the coronavirus, juvenile justice advocates are focusing on the kids left behind. At a Tuesday press conference, experts called on authorities to address the needs of youth still held in detention before it was too late.

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Juvenile Agency Chiefs Join Calls to Release Jailed Youth

Youth correctional administrators have joined juvenile justice advocates across the country in warning that the 43,000 young people currently in custody are among those at highest risk of infection from the coronavirus. “The experience of (juvenile) incarceration just got worse,” said former NY State Youth Corrections Commissioner Gladys Carrion.