COVID-19 epidemic in 7 federal prisons

Four new COVID-19 outbreaks were reported in federal prisons on Friday, bringing the total number of facilities affected to seven.

The new infections are believed to affect inmates and staff, the Correctional Service of Canada (CSC) reported. CSC spokeswoman Marie Pier Lecuyer said Friday that 248 staff members and 107 inmates tested positive, Global News reported. The day before, the agency had reported infections in 160 staff members and 88 inmates.

Canada’s public health agency sounded the alarm a year ago about the vulnerability of people in prison. “Prison settings are vulnerable to widespread transmission of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2),” the agency said in a report in January 2021.

People in prison are at special risk, especially due to the proximity and lack of ventilation in very small spaces.

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