A judge in the Bronx ruled that people incarcerated in the state’s prisons and jails had been arbitrarily excluded from the coronavirus vaccine rollout.
New York must immediately begin to offer Covid vaccines to all incarcerated people in the state’s prisons and jails, a judge ruled on Monday, making the state one of few in the nation to provide doses to such a broad population behind bars.
The order, the first involving any of the country’s largest correctional systems, comes as the coronavirus continues to roar through facilities in New York. At least 1,100 people living behind prison walls have tested positive for the virus since the start of last month, and five have died.
But even as corrections staff and many other groups, including some who live in close-contact settings like group homes and homeless shelters, have gained access to the vaccines in recent weeks, most incarcerated people in New York have remained ineligible to receive doses.
Justice Alison Y. Tuitt of State Supreme Court in the Bronx wrote in her ruling on Monday afternoon that people in prisons and jails had been arbitrarily left out of the rollout and that doing so was “unfair and unjust” and an “abuse of discretion.”
Judge orders New York to provide prisoners with COVID-19 vaccines [news.yahoo.com 3/29/21]
Judge Orders New York To Provide COVID-19 Vaccine To All Incarcerated People Immediately [huffpost.com 3/29/21]