Jumaane Williams hopes to lower incarceration to avoid spread of coronavirus

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Public advocate Jumaane Williams is hoping to lower the number of people incarcerated to avoid the spread of the coronavirus. 

This comes as the New York City Department of Correction confirmed its first case of the virus among its inmates and a Rikers Island correction officer tested positive. 

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Correction officials state that they are working closely to identify and notify any person who may have come in contact with the inmate. 

Visitors are not allowed to see the nearly 1,700 inmates at the facility right at the moment. 

 

Williams says he is speaking up for those incarcerated and working at the jails citywide asking for change. 

He believes that the NYPD should suspend low-level arrests and that adding more people to the prison population citywide could be a death sentence for certain inmates. 

The city official is also asking the DOC to release those who could be most at risk to the virus. 

Williams says he hopes that the governor and mayor can make a firm decision on a plan to shelter-in-place. He says he believes that would aid in curbing the prison population and spreading the virus throughout these facilities.

 

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