Update on COVID 19 at California Mens Colony West, Aug. 1, 2020

Moore, Stan

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Update on COVID 19 at California Mens Colony West, Aug. 1, 2020 Today is August 1, 2020. We are well into the COVID 19 pandemic. The surrounding county of San Luis Obispo is in red alert with more active cases of COVID 19, more hospitalizations, and more fatalities than ever before. If COVID 19 is to get into the prison population, it will be vectored via officers and staff bringing in the virus from outside the prison. So at 7:00 am I am outside my dormitory waiting for the chow line to form at the chow hall next door. The delivery truck from the kitchen is backed into the loading dock at the chow hall and inmates are offloading the stainless steel carts containing this morning's breakfast. Meanwhile, three officers and the five staff truck drivers are huddled together closely -- well within six feet of one another, shooting the bull. Not one of these potential vectors of COVID 19 is wearing a mask at all. No masks are even wrapped around their necks or apparent at all. If one has picked up the virus and is asymptomatic, the other three will likely pick up the infection and pass it into the dorms, the program office, etc. I have long since filed my 602 grievance form asking for early release from prison on the grounds of my age (64 y.o.), my medical fragility (Stage 4 prostate cancer and diabetes) and ineffective mitigation of COVID 19 at my facility. My petition has been denied at the first two levels and is now in the hands of Sacramento, where I expect it to be denied once and for all. The ground for denial are that numerous measures have been taken and are in effect to protect prisoners like me from the coronavirus COVID 19. There are two basic problems with CDCR COVID 19 mitigation. The first is that some of the mitigation techniques have little or no chance of mitigating the virus. For instance, painting lines on the dormitory floor to establish imaginary "pods" can not possibly halt the spread of the virus, even if there are now six places where adjacent bunks are now separated by six feet. Those lines and separation of bunks in no way prevent inmates from walking at any time day or night to within 6 feet of any other prisoner in the entire dormitory. And prisoners do move around day and all night en route to the day room, the front door, the bathroom, shower, office, etc. There is no meaningful protection from the spread of COVID 19 "within" the dormitory. But there are at least eleven extra prisoners living in the dorm compared to pre-COVID 19 conditions. Each new prisoner to the dorm increases risk of exposure to COVID 19 to the dorm population because all move about the yard and facility where they can be exposed to the virus brought in by some officer, nurse, truck driver, kitchen free staff worker, librarian, etc. p.2 Just now I went to the bathroom to wash my hands after breakfast. There was absolutely no hand soap in either one of the two stainless steel soap dispensers. Yet in the second denial of my 602 grievance, Associate Warden McQuaid claimed that all soap dispensers are refilled daily. I knew that this was a 100% false statement, but I asked other inmates in my dorm if I was missing something, and I asked other inmates in other dorms if they had hand soap every day as A.W. McQuaid asserted. Every prisoner I asked told me what I already had seen and knew after living in this facility for over 5 years. Soap dispensers are almost never filled and almost never contain hand soap -- COVID 19 pandemic or not. Associate Warden McQuaid, who told me in her denial of my 602 grievance that the hand soap dispensers were kept full daily, and that the "pods" protect me from COVID 19, and that the officers are instructed to wear masks at all times, also believes that temperature screening of all prison employees and staff arriving for work every day also protects me from COVID 19. But recently my primary care physician, Dr. Guiang, told me that 10 nurses at the CMC West clinic had tested positive for COVID 19 when all staff were tested recently. All were sent home to recover, but all had been screened upon entering the facility daily by taking their temperature at the point of entry and had been considered "safe" to enter the facility -- where when tested medically they were found to be positive for COVID 19. What is wrong with Associate Warden McQuaid and with the CDCR as an entity that allows her/them to believe such fantasies are a charades that they are effectively mitigating COVID 19. The sad reality is that the CDCR personnel, including AW McQuaid and all the rest believe that if a policy is placed into official writing, it must be true. They think that if they say officially that the COVID 19 virus is mitigated, then it is. They never bother to investigate compliance with their directives on any meaningful scale. If they come into the facility to perform a perfunctory investigation, the program sergeant announces their arrival in advance with a stern warning, to wear masks, etc. or else. The truth is suppressed. And AW McQuaid's fat state pay check depends on her belief system that she is keeping the prison safe. And so she believes it, and she denies my grievance and many others Yet I know what I see around here everyday, including today Stan Moore

Author: Moore, Stan

Author Location: California

Date: August 1, 2020

Genre: Essay

Extent: 4 pages

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