This letter was written by a person incarcerated at Calipatria.
As I recollect when this pandemic first occurred and got serious to me. About February 2020, here in Calipatria State Prison. Watching the news, I knew this was a lethal virus. I was concerned for my children, family and myself. All correctional officers wore no mask.
So some inmates, including me, started coming out of our cells with bandanas over our faces. To protect ourselves from this new virus called “COVID-19.” We were told by correctional officers and their higher rankings we would receive a (115) disciplinary write up if we proceed to wear coverings over our nose and mouth!
I thought to myself, I could get time added to my sentence for trying to protect myself. I didn’t understand, was I the only person seeing these people in the world dropping like flies and getting packed in ice containers by the hundreds and thousands?
A couple to a few weeks later, the same people who told us we would get disciplinary actions towards us for wearing coverings over our faces were now informing us that we will get disciplinary actions towards us if we don’t wear face coverings. That’s when I knew they received the memo.
I had no problem with complying with the request. The officers made us wear masks but they were not wearing them yet. Until inmates started to complain. Because they are the source of how the virus will be passed to us. A week or two later, inmates and COs as well were all wearing masks, it was mandatory.
This was in April 2020. I give this prison credit for the fast response on mask.