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Families say confusion rules in federal prisons over coronavirus policies

Apr 10, 2020 12:30 pm
Josh Gerstein is reporting for Politico [dot] com federal prison officials appear confused about how to step up early releases of the incarcerated to combat the COVID-19 pandemic. Family members of those currently locked up say there is uncertainty about whether those being considered for release must be held in quarantine for 14 days before being sent home in an effort to keep the infection from being transmitted to the community-at-large. However, in some instances, the incarcerated are being quarantined near those who are isolated because they are suspected of having the virus. So far, 283 infections and eight deaths have been reported in federal prisons nationwide, but representatives of the guards' union and advocates for the incarcerated say the numbers are actually higher. A Bureau of Prisons spokesperson did not address specifics about steps to segregate the symptomatic or exposed from those people set for release, but said facilities are following standards set by the Centers for Disease Control. As of April 9, the Bureau of Prisons has moved 789 individuals to home confinement since Attorney General William Barr first publicly called to increase those moves on March 26, according to statistics from the agency. That number has risen by more than 200 this week. Read the full story at Politico [dot] com.