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March 14, 2020

Rep. Pressley Calls for Protecting Incarcerated Individuals from COVID-19

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WASHINGTON – Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley (MA-07) joined Politics Nation  to discuss the importance of centering incarcerated people, one of the most vulnerable populations, as congress mobilizes to combat COVID-19. In the interview, she called on the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) to engage in compassionate release to reduce overcrowding in prisons. Last week, she sent a letter alongside Congresswomen Ocasio-Cortez, Velazquez, and Tlaib to BOP demanding answers on their pandemic guidance and crisis planning. The lawmakers requested answers to their questions by March 11, 2020 which BOP woefully ignored. Some of the questions the lawmakers listed in the letter included:

1.     What training, if any, have BOP personnel received in preparation for coronavirus?

2.     Have federal prisons received test kits?

3.     Have any incarcerated individuals or staff shown symptoms of COVID-19 and if so, what are the quarantine protocols?

Congresswoman Pressley is actively working to maximize the federal government’s assistance in combatting the spread and impact of COVID-19 and has been a staunch advocate for transforming our criminal legal system. Last year, she introduced H. Res. 702, The People’s Justice Guarantee ─ a comprehensive framework to transform the American criminal legal system into one that guarantees justice for all. Last month, she sent a letter to the White House demanding that any COVID-19 vaccine or treatment be accessible, available, and affordable to all. She also sent a letter to Vice President Mike Pence pushing back on the public charge rule as to not deter immigrants from seeking COVID-19 testing. 

The full interview can be viewed here.


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