Federal Correctional Institution Tallahassee sees spike in active inmate COVID-19 infections

Published: Oct. 19, 2020 at 10:19 PM EDT
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - No federal prison in the South has more active coronavirus cases than the Federal Correctional Institution in Tallahassee, according to the Bureau of Prison’s online database of infections.

According to that tracker, 91 inmates and 16 staff members have tested positive for COVID-19. Those are considered “active" cases. A BOP spokesperson said cumulative totals weren’t immediately available to the public.

The President of the local workers union said the procedures in place right now are contributing to the rise in cases. Kristan Morgan argues arriving inmates pose a serious risk for other inmates and staff.

“The same issues we had early in the pandemic are the same issues we have today," she said.

"The inmate movement hasn’t ceased. It’s really, really difficult to not spread COVID-19 in the prison setting, once those inmates come in and have [the virus]. So it just catches like Wildfire.”

Thomas said the agency has done a good job supplying PPE to inmates and staff since early pandemic supply woes. But Morgan said employees are still fearful of catching the virus while working in close proximity to inmates.

In a statement to WCTV, the BOP spokesperson said the agency “has instituted a comprehensive management approach that includes screening, testing, appropriate treatment, prevention, education, and infection control measures,” arguing the agency emerged as " a correctional leader in the pandemic."

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