BOSTON — It was a massive mask drop at the Nashua Street jail Thursday morning.
Operation Lipstick, in partnership with several community organizations, raised over $10,000 to provide more than 5,000 masks.
“We have to connect with folks, to get them the masks to let them know how serious COVID-19 is. But also make it available, because of the nature of this pandemic, there’ve been a lot of people hoarding asks and charging people incredible amounts of money,” said Leonard Lee, Operation Lipstick.
Suffolk County Sheriff, Steven Tompkins tells Boston 25, 11 incarcerated people contracted COVID-19 and have recovered. Tompkins says they implemented a COVID-19 safety plan in March including shutting down all facilities to visitors, cleaning all facilities every three hours; isolate sick prisoners in an empty ward, and a donation allowed them to provide prisoners two free calls a week and they’re working on video chat capabilities.
There is a national debate on early release for incarcerated people due to coronavirus concerns. Tompkins says 64 people have already been released from pre-trial detention in Suffolk County. He says it’s ultimately up to the courts to release those incarcerated.
“When the DA contacted us about this, it was fine with me with this caveat: if they had a place to go, then let them go. But if they were going to be homeless or stay in a shelter, then let them stay with us,” says Tompkins. “We are our brothers and sisters keepers and that we need to work collaboratively to get beyond this.”
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