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Law

How Are NC Jails Responding To COVID-19?

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McKenzie County Sheriff's Office
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Hundreds of inmates have been released from state prisons during the COVID-19 pandemic to help curb the spread of the virus. But the same is not true in the state’s jails, which housed just under 16,000 people statewide in the first five months of 2020, according to data from the University of North Carolina School of Government. The North Carolina Department of Public Safety oversees the response to the coronavirus in the state’s prisons, but jails around the state do not have the same accountability or oversight. 

So far there has been no directive from the North Carolina Sheriffs’ Association on how to decarcerate those spaces. Scholar Felicia Arriaga has been tracking North Carolina jails’ response to the pandemic and joins host Frank Stasio to detail how the lack of jail decarceration has shaped the health and lives of those incarcerated there. Andrea “Muffin” Hudson, executive director of the North Carolina Community Bail Fund of Durham, also joins the conversation to share stories from those incarcerated in the Durham County Detention Center and to talk about what conditions are like on the ground there now.
 

Amanda Magnus grew up in Maryland and went to high school in Baltimore. She became interested in radio after an elective course in the NYU journalism department. She got her start at Sirius XM Satellite Radio, but she knew public radio was for her when she interned at WNYC. She later moved to Madison, where she worked at Wisconsin Public Radio for six years. In her time there, she helped create an afternoon drive news magazine show, called Central Time. She also produced several series, including one on Native American life in Wisconsin. She spends her free time running, hiking, and roller skating. She also loves scary movies.
Longtime NPR correspondent Frank Stasio was named permanent host of The State of Things in June 2006. A native of Buffalo, Frank has been in radio since the age of 19. He began his public radio career at WOI in Ames, Iowa, where he was a magazine show anchor and the station's News Director.
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