Large-scale prisons are cities unto themselves and as such are taking some drastic steps that states and cities are doing to limit the spread of the coronavirus.
The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) has undertaken a number of those steps to protect inmates, and staff and their families.
“Unprecedented changes are being implemented in order to protect all those who live and work inside our state correctional facilities,” wrote Dana Simas, CDCR press secretary, in an email. “We will continue to make changes to our operations based on updated guidance from government and public health officials.”
As of Friday morning, two confirmed cases of coronavirus, among staff, have been reported within CDCR institutions, one at San Quentin State Prison and one at California State Prison, Sacramento. All inmates visiting have been cancelled statewide until further notice and that includes overnight family visits. Some staff are working from home, where appropriate, but some staff are vital to maintaining safety and providing care for the inmates.