Nearly 1,000 inmates will be removed from San Quentin prison after its infection rate has gotten so bad it’s been dubbed ‘the Chernobyl of COVID’
On Monday, California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced a COVID-19 outbreak in San Quentin State Prison was his “top focus and priority,” and that nearly 1,000 inmates would be released early or relocated.
The announcement came after more than one third of the inmates had been confirmed having COVID-19.
Last week, University of California San Francisco infectious disease specialist Dr. Peter Chin-Hong told NBC Bay Area the prison had become “the Chernobyl of COVID.”
San Quentin’s coronavirus outbreak stemmed from a transfer of 121 highly vulnerable inmates from the California Institution for Men in Chino on May 30. Over three weeks, the prison went from having no cases to 499 confirmed cases.
California Sen. Mike McGuire called the error a “failure of leadership” and said the crisis had been “completely avoidable.”
San Quentin State Prison’s coronavirus situation is so volatile it’s been labeled “the Chernobyl of COVID,” and Californian Gov. Gavin Newsom said he is looking into who can leave as soon as possible.
On Monday, Newsom said that the outbreak in California’s oldest correctional facility was his “top focus and priority,” and nearly 1,000 inmates will be released early or relocated, according to The Washington Post.
San Quentin is California’s only prison with inmates on death row.
Since June 24, at least five of the inmates on death row have died from COVID-19, and by the end of June about a third of the prison’s inmates — more than 1,300 inmates — were infected.
On July 2, University of California San Francisco infectious disease specialist Dr. Peter Chin-Hong told NBC Bay Area the prison had become “the Chernobyl of COVID.”