First UK prisoner infected with Covid-19

On 19th March 2020, May Bulman writes

An inmate at HMP Manchester tests positive for virus as campaigners call on ministers to urgently release some of prison population or risk ‘death sentence’ for many

The prisoner has tested positive for coronavirus in what is the first confirmed case of an inmate contracting the disease in the UK.

The inmate had been at HMP Manchester and is currently in hospital. No other prison staff or prisoners at the facility have tested positive, but 13 prisoners and four members of staff have been put into isolation as a precaution, a prison service spokesperson said.

It comes after a prison officer tested positive for coronavirus in Surrey at HMP High Down on Saturday. Four prisoners are believed to have been placed in isolation as a precaution.

The Prison Officers Association has confirmed that nationally 113 staff and 75 prisoners are currently in isolation after showing symptoms of the virus.

Criminal justice charities are calling on the government to urgently release a proportion of the prison population to protect them from the current public health crisis, warning that not doing so could be a “death sentence” for many.

Read Whole article in The Independent