Peters and Buckner: vaccinate inmates and prison workers earlier

Under Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) guidelines, prison inmates and staff are classified under Phase 1b in the state’s COVID-19 vaccination plan, alongside persons aged 75 and older and other frontline essential workers and sheltered populations like homeless people.

State Sen. Robert Peters (D-13th) and Kam Buckner (D-26th) released the following joint statement urging the state to classify prison inmates and staff to a higher level: Phase 1a, alongside healthcare personnel and long-term care facility residents and staff, who are already being vaccinated.

"COVID-19 has been tearing through Illinois prisons virtually unchecked, which puts the people incarcerated within them, as well as the support staffs who keep them running, at a much greater risk of contracting the disease. Prison conditions do not always afford the opportunity to socially distance, so providing vaccines for these individuals is likely the best way to prevent the spread of coronavirus.

"No one deserves to be at a higher risk of contracting a life-threatening disease simply because of their station in life or because of where they work. Ensuring the quick and efficient distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine to prison populations and staffs is the moral thing to do, and we fully support IDPH’s plan to do so."

via Hyde Park Herald

January 22, 2021 at 07:09AM

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