This letter was written by a person incarcerated at High Desert.
Finally, the inevitable formula manifested and this isolated area of mostly pessimistic citizens got the truth of which they’d refused to believe COVID-19 infections. It was around November and that is the month of my birthday. The prison went on quarantine lockdown. Nurses came by and tested the entire population.
If you tested positive, you were moved to another building and the infections spread rapidly until a group of inmates who were not infected refused to move to an infected building. The officers took the hand sanitizer stating it had alcohol in it and didn’t provide us any other sanitizer.
The director of CDCR sent the sanitizer to us and we never got to use it. Nurses came around three times a day to check our breathing, temperature, and pulse. The medical staff did a good job making sure we were okay at great risk to themselves.
After 30 days, the infections went away but we continued to be isolated. We begged for the Jpay tablets and kiosks, which allow us to email family and friends. We were told this yard is too dangerous to have what the equally dangerous opposite yard here already has–Jpay tablets.
We begged for family visits promising to quarantine after the visits for a fortnight, but no contact visits will be allowed until May or June 2021. The video visits are once a month for almost 30 minutes. They start late and end at the scheduled time. I received 21 minutes for my visit.
I am glad that I made it through COVID-19 so far without any losses. My celly lost his mother two weeks ago. I know many say prisoners deserve harsh treatment but I must tell you, that thinking is flawed because the majority of prisoners will be returned to society and I know I don’t want some angry, agitated person set free in my family’s community.
We don’t deserve back rubs but being treated with dignity isn’t too much to ask during a pandemic. No hand sanitizer or distribution of cleaning products.