April 25, 2020

Manchin Statement On Bureau Of Prisons COVID-19 Proposal

Charleston, WV – U.S. Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) released the following statement about the proposed plan from the U.S. Bureau of Prisons to relocate inmates from COVID-19 hotspot regions of the country to West Virginia for quarantine.

“West Virginians have buckled down and closely followed state and federal guidelines to prevent the spread of COVID-19 here in the Mountain State, and that’s why I am strongly opposing the transfer of out of state prisoners to West Virginia. During this time of a global pandemic we must take every precaution to prevent the spread of COVID-19, and this is especially true in our correctional system where the brave men and women who operate these facilities work in close proximity with our prison populations. I am deeply troubled by plans the Bureau of Prisons are considering to transport new inmates from COVID-19 hotspot regions of the country to West Virginia for quarantine. This move puts our already vulnerable population and our correctional officers and their families at greater risk of exposure to COVID-19,” Senator Manchin said.

“I am imploring BOP to halt their plans and instead help our state through this challenging time by using the excess capacity at FCC Hazelton and FCI Gilmer to help relieve the overcrowding in our state jails and waving the cost of housing the inmates for the duration of the pandemic. This act of compassion by BOP would greatly benefit the people of West Virginia while we continue to fight this terrible virus. I will continue working with the U.S. Justice Department, BOP leadership, union leaders and the leadership teams at FCC Hazelton and FCI Gilmer to ensure every precaution is taken to keep the citizens of West Virginia, our correctional officers, and the inmates safe as we fight the COVID-19 pandemic.”