Stop the Spread of COVID-19: Free the Elderly and Sick from Prisons and Jails

Stop the Spread of COVID-19: Release Vulnerable Communities from Immigrant Detention, Jails, and Prisons

Update 3/24/20: We must immediately reduce the numbers of people in immigration detention, starting by releasing the most vulnerable to serious illness or death. These detention centers are often crowded and lack basic sanitation supplies, with no way to practice social distancing and mitigate the spread of COVID-19. Public health experts tell us that, once an outbreak occurs in detention, it will spread quickly and devastatingly. Add your name to strengthen our demand.


Public health experts are sounding the alarm of the threat that prisons and jails pose in this pandemic. There is a heightened risk of infection for people who are involved in the criminal legal system – people living in it, staff, and the communities they return home to.

That's why we're calling on President Trump and all state governors to heed the recommendations of public health professionals: Release communities who are most vulnerable to COVID-19 – particularly the elderly and sick – and reduce overcrowding in our criminal legal system.

It's on all of us to call for immediate actions that will protect the people most vulnerable to this pandemic – that includes those involved in the criminal legal system. Downsizing the footprint of the criminal legal system must be a part of the COVID-19 public health response.

To President Trump and all state governors:

Follow public health expert advice by releasing communities vulnerable to COVID-19 from immigrant detention, jails, and prisons. This is an essential step in stopping the spread of this pandemic.