Articles on Prison health

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Prisons around the worlds have started to reduce their population in response to the coronavirus pandemic. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli

Coronavirus in prisons: How and why to release inmates in a pandemic

Prison lawyers in Canada are scrambling to fill the gap left by federal inaction on inmate populations who are vulnerable to COVID-19. A recent case in Ontario could provide a legal precedent.
Calls for help at Chicago’s Cook County jail, where hundreds of inmates and staff have COVID-19, April 9, 2020. Kamil Krzaczynski/AFP via Getty Images

Prisons and jails are coronavirus epicenters – but they were once designed to prevent disease outbreaks

In the 1790s, penal reformers rebuilt America's squalid jails as airy, hygienic places meant to keep residents – and by extension society – healthy. Now they're hotbeds of COVID-19. What went wrong?
A tipi at a federal prison in Edmonton. Prison systems have legal options to decrease their prison populations, including ways to return Indigenous people in prison to their communities. (The Office of the Correctional Investigator)

Why some Canadian prisoners should be released during the coronavirus pandemic

Rapidly decreasing the prison population by letting people out is a public health imperative as governments for solutions to slow down the spread of the COVID-19 virus.
Prison represents only a temporary disruption in tobacco use for many smokers. TeodorLazarev

Why Australian prisoners are smoking nicotine-infused tea leaves

The only quitting tool most Australian prisoners have access to is nicotine lozenges. These are being mixed with tea leaves to create a smokable product known as "teabacco".
A prisoner looks out a window on March 26, 2015, from Zhdanivskaya prison in Ukraine, were TB is rampant. AP Photo/Mstyslav Chernov

Why community and not confinement will end TB

World TB Day will be observed March 24, with the good news that deaths from tuberculosis are declining. But a trend toward confining those with TB threatens to stall advances.
Tobacco, like other substances, are likely to become part of the prison contraband trade. Image from shutterstock.com

Total smoking bans aren’t the answer to better prisoner health

From May next year, Queensland prisoners will no longer be able to smoke cigarettes. Smoking in cells was prohibited in Queensland facilities in 2008, but as of next year the prohibition will extend to…
The number of inmates in Victorian prisons is on the rise as part of the government’s tough on crime stance. But at what cost? shutterstock

Tough on crime: Victoria is not learning lessons from abroad

Locking up people is easy. It is the first refuge of intellectually bankrupt politicians clamouring for votes by “getting tough” on crime. A good general will read history before going to war, so a good…
Prisoners are having sex whether we like it or not and a lack of condoms affects us all. PA/Barry Batchelor

Prisoners have sex so let them have condoms

The idea of prisoners having sex upsets people; it offends our sense that prison is a place of punishment not pleasure. But sex still happens, maybe more than we like to think. And if it is happening…

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