Prisoner Actions in the US in Response to the COVID-19 Crisis

Published May 17, 2020

Prisoner Actions in the US in Response to the COVID-19 Crisis

As the COVID-19 epidemic continues to spread across North America, prisoners and detainees in the US and Canada are responding with acts of collective protest and rebellion in numbers that are nearly unprecedented in the last decade at least – on par only with the 2016 and 2018 national prisoner strikes.

Summary May 15, 11:00pm:

99 distinct events

First is on March 17, 2020

Last is on May 11, 2020

55 day span

Most frequent states:

9 in Louisiana

6 in New York

6 in California

6 in Illinois

6 in Washington

5 in Florida

5 in Washington

5 in New Jersey

10 events in Canada

Facility type (a facility can have multiple types):

37 in Immigrant Detention Centers

29 in City/County Jails

27 in State Prisons

6 in Juvenile Detention Facilities

6 in Provincial Prisons

2 in Canadian Federal Prisons

2 in U.S. Federal Prisons

1 in a Treatment Facility

Private Prisons

24 events occurred at private prisons

19 of these actions were at facilities that contracts with Immigration and Customs Enforecement

2 of these actions were at facilities that contracts with the Federal Bureau of Prisons

1 of these actions was at a facility that contracts with a state department of corrections

1 of these actions was at a facility that contracts U.S. Marshals Service

13 of these facilities are run by Geo Group

7 of these facilities are run by Core Civic

2 of these facilities is run by LaSalle Management Corporation

1 of these facilities is run by Immigration Centers of America

1 of these facilities is run by Central Falls Detention Facility Corporation

Event type (an event can have multiple types):

31 Hunger Strikes

22 Uprisings

20 Protests

20 Disturbances

10 Attacks on Guards

9 Escapes or Escape Attempts

6 Food Strikes

5 Work Stoppages

3 Fires

Repression:

16 events were attacked with pepper spray

4 events were attacked with less lethal rounds

2 event attacked with tear gas

2 events attacked with undescribed chemical agents

1 event attacked with tasers

1 event attacked with dogs

Prisoner’s perspective:

51 of the events we have statements from prisoners

19 events where prisoners demand their release

Participants:

Largest event had 360 participants

At least 3620 prisoners total participated across all events

For comparison:

2018 National Strike: 28 events

2018: About 83 events total for the year

2016: About 53 events total for the year

List of Prisoner Actions Amidst the COVID-19 Crisis May 11: Disturbance at Redgranite Correctional Institution, Wisconsin May 10: Uprising at Covington County Jail, Alabama May 9: Work Stoppage at Northwest Detention Center, Washington May 8: Hunger Strike at North Lake Correctional Facility, Michigan May 6: Food Strike at Marion Correctional Institution, Ohio May 5: Hunger Strike at Bordeaux Prison, Quebec May 2: Fire and Disturbance at Cummins Unit, Arkansas May 1: Uprising at Bristol County House of Correction, Mass. May 1: Uprising at Southern State Correctional Facility, Vermont During May Day Protest Outside April 30: ICE Detainees in the Women’s Unit of Adelanto ICE Processing Center Organize Strike April 29: Uprising at Cook County Jail, Chicago April 28: Refusal and Attack on Guards at Cook County Jail, Chicago April 26: Disturbance at Gus Harrison Correctional Facility, Michigan [Unconfirmed]April 24: Food Strike at North Central Correctional Institution, Mass [Unconfirmed] April 22: Disturbance at Westville Correctional Facility, Indiana April 22: Protest at D.C. Central Detention Facility, Washington, D.C. April 21: Protest at Donnacona Institution, Quebec, Canada April 21 (est): Protest at Collins Bay Institution, Ontario, Canada April 20: Protest at Dorsey Run Correctional Facility, Maryland [Unconfirmed] April 20: Protest at Franklin Medical Center in Columbus, OH April 20: Disturbance at Bridge City Center for Youth, Louisiana April 20: Hunger Strike at North Central Correctional Facility, Gardner, Mass. [Unconfirmed] April 19: Attack on Guards at Sumter Correctional Institution in Bushnell, Florida April 17: Disturbance at Pendleton Correctional Facility, Indiana April 16: Food Strike at Ontario Correctional Institute in Response to COVID-19 Outbreak April 16: Escape from Columbia Correctional Institution in Wisconsin April 15 (est): Hunger Strike at Pierce County Jail, Washington April 14: Prisoners Attack Guards and Attempt to Free Others at Cook County Jail, Chicago April 12: Escape from Provincial Correctional Centre in Prince Edward Island, Canada April 12: Uprising at Cummins Unit, Arkansas April 12: Uprising at Ellsworth Correctional Facility, Kansas April 12: Uprising at Bordeaux Prison, Canada in Response to COVID-19 Measures April 12: Escape Attempt at Southwest Arkansas Community Corrections Facility in Texarkana, Arkansas April 12: Uprising at Crossroads Juvenile Center in Brooklyn, New York April 11: Uprising at La Palma Correctional Center, Arizona April 11: Protest at East Mesa Reentry Facility, San Diego, California April 11: Coordinated Threat of Suicide at Cook County Jail, Chicago April 10: Protest at Hamilton-Wentworth Detention Centre After Correctional Officer Tests Positive for COVID-19 April 10: Food Strike and Work Stoppage at Irwin County Detention Center, Georgia April 9: Quarantined Prisoners Build Barricade at Southern State Correctional Facility, New Jersey April 9: Escape at Jackie Brannon Correctional Center, Oklahoma April 9: Uprising at Lansing Correctional Facility, Kansas April 9: Uprising at Stewart Detention Center, Georgia April 9: Hunger Strike at Mesa Verde ICE Processing Center, CA in Response to COVID-19 April 9: Protest at Cedar Creek Correctional Center, Washington April 8 (est): Protest at San Diego County Jail, California April 8: Uprising at FCI Oakdale I, Louisiana Following Multiple COVID-19 Deaths April 8: Uprising at Monroe Correctional Complex, Washington in Response to COVID-19 April 7: Hunger Strike and Tray Blockade at Cook County Jail, Chicago April 7: Uprising at Columbia River Correctional Facility, Oregon April 7: Uprising at Westville Correctional Facility, Indiana [Unconfirmed] April 7 (est): Hunger Strike at Edmonton Institution in Alberta April 7: Uprising at Krome Detention Center, Florida to Protest COVID-19 Response April 6: Escape from Swanson Center for Youth, Monroe, Louisiana April 6: Escape at Jackie Brannon Correctional Center, Oklahoma April 6: Escape from Bridge City Center for Youth, Louisiana April 6: Uprising at Moberly Correctional Center, Missouri April 5: Hunger Strike at North Lake Correctional Facility, Michigan April 5: Hunger Strike at Adelanto ICE Processing Center, California April 4: Uprising at Passaic County Jail, New Jersey Due to COVID-19 April 4: Food Strike at Queen’s Detention Facility, New York In Response to COVID-19 April 4: Hunger Strike at Donald W. Wyatt Detention Facility, Rhode Island April 3: Disturbance at FCI Butner, North Carolina [Unconfirmed] April 3: Hunger Strike at Otay Mesa ICE Facility, San Diego In Response to COVID-19 Outbreak April 3: Disturbance at Philadelphia Industrial Correctional Center During COVID-19 Quarantine April 3: Prisoners “Threaten to Organize Hunger Strikes and Work Stoppages” at Connecticut Prison April 3 (est)-Ongoing: Hunger and Strike at Cook County Jail, Chicago in Protest of Handling of COVID-19 April 2: Hunger Strike at Krome Detention Center, Miami, Florida in Response to COVID-19 April 2: Hunger Strike at Franklin County Jail, Pennsylvania April 2: Uprising at the El Paso County Jail in Response to Handling of COVID-19 April 2: Protest at Neuse Correctional, North Carolina in Response to COVID-19 Outbreak March 31: Hunger Strike at Farmville Detention Center in Response to COVID-19 March 31: Hunger Strike at Monroe County Detention Center, Florida March 30 (est): Hunger Strike at Ottawa-Carleton Detention Centre, Ottawa March 30: Prisoners Start a Fire at Unnamed Texas Prison in Response to COVID-19 March 30: Work Stoppage in Bristol ICE Detention in Response to COVID-19 March 30: Hunger Strike at Miami Correctional Facility, Indiana March 28: ICE Detainees at York County Prison Hunger Strike in Response to COVID-19 March 28: Prisoners at Indiana State Prison Start Fires in Protest of COVID-19 Lockdown [Unconfirmed] March 28: Protest at South Louisiana ICE Processing Center in Response to COVID-19 March 27: “Breaking Down Borders” Hunger Strike at Northwest Detention Center in Response to COVID-19 March 27: Protest at Saskatchewan Penitentiary in Prince Albert, Sask., Canada March 26: Hunger Strike at Stewart Detention Center, Georgia in Response to COVID-19  March 25: ICE Detainees Hunger Strike in Richwood, Louisiana in Response to COVID-19 March 25: Hunger Strike at Bergen County Jail, New Jersey [Unconfirmed] March 25: Hunger Strike at Shawangunk Correctional Facility Demanding Sanitation Measures March 24: 9 Women Escape from Work Release Facility in South Dakota to Avoid COVID-19 Exposure  March 24: Hunger Strike at Columbia Correctional, Wisconsin Over COVID-19 Concerns [Unconfirmed] March 24: Disturbance at Pine Prairie ICE Processing Center, Louisiana March 24: Hunger Strike at Laval Immigration Holding Centre, Quebec Against COVID-19 Conditions  March 23: 51 ICE Detainees Sign Petition Expressing COVID-19 Concerns March 23: Hunger Strike at Buffalo Federal Detention Center, New York March 23: Hunger Strike at Strafford County House of Corrections, NH Protesting COVID-19 Lockdown March 23 and 25: Two Protests at LaSalle ICE Processing Center, Louisiana in Response to COVID-19  March 23: ICE Detainees in South Texas Protest Over Lack of Response to COVID-19 Epidemic March 23: 14 Escape Yakima County Jail During COVID-19 Crisis March 23: Uprising at Spring Creek Youth Services Center, Colorado March 22: ICE Detainees Hunger Strike in Glades County, Florida Protesting Inaction on COVID-19  March 21: Protest on Rikers Amidst COVID-19 Outbreak  March 21: Attack on Guards at Tecumseh State Prison, Nebraska March 20: ICE Detainees Hunger Strike at the Elizabeth Detention Center, NJ in Response to COVID-19 March 20: ICE Detainees in Alabama Protest, Hunger Strike and Threaten Suicide Amidst COVID Outbreak  March 20: Hunger Strike in Prison in Guayama, Puerto Rico in Response to COVID-19 March 20: Uprising in Grants, New Mexico Amidst Fears of COVID-19 Outbreak  March 18: ICE Detainees Hunger Strike in Hudson County, NJ in response to COVID-19  March 17: Meal Strike at Monterey County Jail, California in Response to COVID-19 March 17: ICE Detainees Hunger Strike in Essex County, New Jersey in Response to COVID-19

From: https://perilouschronicle.com