Rethinking Incarceration During a Global Pandemic
Throughout Module 4, among other corrections related topics, you’ve read about community corrections, life inside prison, and reentry. For this assignment, you will be asked to take the information from your text, additional readings, and documentaries to think about the impact of COVID-19 on incarcerating individuals in jail and in prison. Specifically, if you were in a position to develop policy, how would you determine who should be released from a jail or prison facility to limit the exposure of inmates, the staff, and the public to COVID-19. The assignment asks you to address specific questions about the implications of your decisions.
Although the assigned reading and viewing materials provide the majority of information that you need to understand what should be considered when addressing the questions, you will also need to read and identify additional materials that discuss the impact of COVID-19 on correctional facilities (e.g. news articles, government reports). At the end of this prompt, I have listed more than a dozen examples of additional reading materials that will help you understand the issue. You can use these and/or search for your own. Importantly, you need to cite the information (both assigned in this module and resources you identify) in-text and in a bibliography using APA format.
Finally, as far as instructions, I am not giving a page limit. However, the answers to your questions can be succinct and I recommend, if you are comfortable with this format, just copying and pasting the questions into a Word document and fill in the answers below each question to make sure you address all questions asked. I also want to see direct and cited connections to the assigned and additional readings. Although I am asking for your opinion, that opinion should be backed-up by facts and examples of what others have done. It would not be beneficial to your grade for me to read your responses and question whether you had read or viewed the materials assigned for this module or read more about how correctional agencies are adapting to deal with the pandemic.
Below are the questions I want you to answer. As always, feel free to use the Ask the Instructor or Student Questions for Module 4: Corrections discussion boards if you have questions or comments about the assignment.
Examples of Additional Resources on COVID-19 & Incarceration (Listed in No Particular Order)
https://www.capradio.org/articles/2020/08/12/californias-post-prison-chaos-thousands-released-early-including-many-with-coronavirus/ (Links to an external site.)
https://www.pbs.org/newshour/health/inside-the-covid-unit-at-the-worlds-largest-womens-prison (Links to an external site.)
https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/thousands-sick-federal-prisoners-sought-release-covid-19-spread-nearly-n1242193 (Links to an external site.)
https://www.postcrescent.com/story/news/2020/10/20/i-feel-completely-helpless-calls-release-certain-state-prisoners-grow-louder-virus-spreads-behind-ba/5935506002/ (Links to an external site.)
https://sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com/2020/10/20/court-orders-release-transfer-1700-san-quentin-prison-inmates-covid-outbreak/ (Links to an external site.)
https://www.nj.com/news/2020/10/murphy-signs-bill-to-release-thousands-of-nj-prisoners-early-beginning-the-day-after-election-day.html (Links to an external site.)
https://www.nj.com/news/2020/10/hundreds-of-nj-prisoners-expected-to-be-released-early-are-at-risk-of-homelessness-records-show.html (Links to an external site.)
https://www.brookings.edu/events/the-impact-of-covid-19-on-prisons/ (Links to an external site.)
https://www.prisonpolicy.org/reports/failing_grades.html (Links to an external site.)
https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2020/09/pandemic-inspires-new-push-shrink-jails-and-prisons (Links to an external site.)
https://www.themarshallproject.org/2020/05/01/a-state-by-state-look-at-coronavirus-in-prisons (Links to an external site.)
https://www.pewtrusts.org/en/research-and-analysis/blogs/stateline/2020/07/01/how-covid-19-in-jails-and-prisons-threatens-nearby-communities (Links to an external site.)
https://www.cato.org/blog/decarceration-face-pandemic (Links to an external site.)
https://www.buckscountycouriertimes.com/story/news/state/2020/08/18/covid-19-pennsylvania-prison-inmates-corrections-jails/3363510001/ (Links to an external site.)
https://www.governor.pa.gov/newsroom/wolf-administration-participates-in-national-project-to-review-safe-inmate-population-reduction-during-covid-19/ (Links to an external site.)