University of Wisconsin–Madison

Proposed Public Health and Public Safety Pathways for Criminal Justice System Responses to COVID-19

Type Policy Brief or Report
Year 2020
Level City or Town, County
State(s) All States
Policy Areas Health, Public Safety, Public Spaces
Incarceration puts both incarcerated people and corrections staff at risk of contracting COVID-19. A wide array of criminal justice stakeholders have come together to call for a public health-oriented approach to the COVID-19 crisis. The key recommendations include releasing incarcerated individuals, limiting new additions to closed correctional settings, addressing violations of COVID-19 related orders through a public health approach (rather than with criminalization), connecting public health organizations and criminal justice stakeholders, and utilizing innovations that promote integration of public health priorities into the justice system.

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