Date of Defense:
May 13, 2020
The COVID-19 pandemic has markedly changed life in the United States and across the globe over the past six months. Jails and prisons are considered high-risk environments for outbreaks of the emerging infectious disease. Incarcerated women are particularly vulnerable to severe COVID-19 infections, due to the high rates of chronic illness in this population and small number of correctional facilities that house women across the country. MCF-Shakopee, Minnesota’s only state prison for women, has taken a number of steps to prevent and respond to the spread of COVID-19 in their facility. However, there is still more than can be done to increase social distancing and support the social and mental health of incarcerated women in Minnesota.
Keywords: Incarceration, COVID-19, gender, MCF-Shakopee