US Human Rights Network Blog

US Human Rights Network Blog

 

 

USHRN & Puente call on AZ to release medically vulnerable inmates

Jul 23, 2020

“For the last 18 weeks we have been fighting to defend the human rights of people inside Arizona’s jails, prisons, and detention centers. We demand Arizona Department of Corrections Director David Shinn, Maricopa County Sheriff Paul Penzone, and ICE Field Director Jesse Williams, release our loved ones inside their facilities. 14 people have died in ADOC custody since Governor Ducey issued his first stay at home order in March. Their deaths could have been prevented if he would have taken action to care for those behind the walls. Continuing to have people detained during an outbreak is inhumane. A sentence should not become a death sentence!” 

-Jovana Renteria, Puente Human Rights Network Co-Executive Director


This week the US Human Rights Network acted in support of our member organization Puente Human Rights Movement [Puente] to demand the human right to health for medically vulnerable people in Arizona’s jails, prisons, and immigration detention centers. Read the full letter here


On July 23, 2020, USHRN and Puente contacted Arizona Governor Doug Ducey, Arizona Department of Corrections Director David Shinn, Maricopa County Sheriff Paul Penzone, and ICE Field Director Jesse Williams, demanding the release of medically vulnerable people in accordance with Puente’s demands to prioritize the release of people with chronic health conditions, LGBTQIA+ individuals, and those over the age of fifty. 


Multiple Arizona locales have become recent COVID-19 hotspots, with outbreaks at several detention facilities across the state. There are currently nearly 600 COVID-19 cases inside Arizona prisons, with at least 14 deaths. Over 400 people have tested positive in immigration detention centers, and over 1,000 people have tested positive in county jails. This situation is a violation of basic human rights. 


Please support Puente’s ongoing efforts to call for the release of all people beginning with medically vulnerable people and those eligible for parole in 2020 by signing their petition and sharing our letter