Approve Life-Saving Measures Against COVID-19 Inside New Jersey Correctional Facilities

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We are calling for protective measures to be taken at all NJDOC Prisons as the state of New Jersey surpasses 4,000 deaths from COVID-19 this week. Prisons have been built to force people in extremely close proximity to one another and with guards and prison staff coming and going from these facilities, it creates a severely life-threatening situation. We are asking for your support in requesting the Governor and Commissioner of the Department of Corrections in New Jersey to approve the following:

1) Universal testing of incarcerated persons, correction officers, and professional staff, who have contact with incarcerated persons.


2) Recognizing the limited medical staff at NJDOC institutions, there exists the need for supplemental medical support staff to assist those addressing Covid-19 crisis.


3) Populations within NJDOC need to be separated pursuant to testing, namely a) healthy, b) quarantined pending test results, and c) infected.


4) Persons in quarantine must have telephonic access to contact families.


5) In the face of the pandemic, persons should not be excluded premised upon crime, housing availability, or income from the prospect of commutation and early release.
 
Our people are dying inside and are continuing to get sick or sicker. People are not getting sufficient medical care, food, supplies, etc. Here is an example of the number of deaths that have been recorded so far in NJ prisons since the pandemic.

2 reported deaths in January
3 reported deaths in February
NO reported deaths in March...
 
Here is April:
 
April 3 Ricky James, Age 37
April 7 Peter Stanley, Age 69
April 11 Chart Chavalaporn, age 57
April 13 Frank Silva, Age 63
April 14 Michael Wilson, Age 64
April 15 Abdul Aziz Farrakhan, Age 64 
April 16 William Prell, Age 72
April 16 James Trotman, Age 56
April 17 Aahhar Saabir, Age 64
April 17 Thomas Moorman,  Age 45
April 17 Carmelo Herrera,  Age 56
April 17 Tonny Kock,  Age 58
April 18 Vito Nigro,  Age 48
April 20 Thomas DeGroat,  Age 72
April 20 Elias Chalet, Age 58
April 20 Calvert Buchanan, Age 53
April 21 William Conway, Age 53
April 22 Roberto Rivera, Age 68
April 23 Robert Livingston, Age 64

These numbers will continue to increase. We have seen more deaths in NJ prisons in April than the last 5 months combined - but these are NOT just numbers.  They are humans who are no longer with us... and WE need to honor them.  It is OUR responsibility.

To learn more about Women Who Never Give Up, Inc., please visit wwng.org 

Sincerely, 

Gale Muhammad, President & Founder

Antonne Henshaw, Vice President 

Women Who Never Give Up, Inc.