Precautions inadequate at prisons

Published 9:38 pm Friday, April 24, 2020

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To the editor:

I have a son who is currently serving time at Lunenburg Correctional. It is a dorm-style setting, with 70-plus men in a dorm. They are unable to separate or practice social distancing.

My son has informed me that the guards are not allowed to go home, even if they feel sick or not well. Because this will leave the prison short on staff. Also, they are not checking temperatures of guards as they arrive for work, nor do they check the inmates’ temperatures.

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They have issued gloves of the thin plastic baggy type to inmates, but only one pair they must use daily. My son has used the same pair for over a week now. The guards get into the inmates’ face as they talk to them and have no mask on. They serve meals to the inmates with no gloves on.

My son said only some guards use gloves, but most do not. They wear the same pair of gloves all day.

The Department of Corrections has gotten on TV with the governor stating they are issuing and practicing safeguards in our prison system, but that is a lie.

Prisoners are considered expendable, but the DOC doesn’t realize that they are someone’s son or daughter. Not to mention someone’s dad and mom. My son has two children that live with us. They are 10 and 11. He is a non-violent offender but deserves to have better care.

“We are all in this together” does not apply to prisoners. I’m upset and concerned. I see a lot of children and parents losing sons, daughters, and moms and dads if they are not going to follow guidelines of the CDC and be proactive in preventing the spread. Already a week ago there was a death of a man at Lunenburg. He died in his sleep, and they found him dead in his bed. No one knows why he died.

I believe prisoners are just as important as the public. The only difference is one group is behind bars.

Denise Owens