Yesterday, we got word from Demi that her bunk mate had tested positive for COVID, and she thought she would be sent to South Woods’s growing quarantine unit. She hadn’t had a positive test, but other sources we have inside South Woods tell us that inmates are being sent without positive tests and are being denied access to test results during their time in quarantine.
The stories we’ve heard from the quarantine unit in South Woods are awful. Inmates describe being locked down in solitary for over a week. They are being denied access to communication with the outside world, including letters, emails, and phone calls. Inmates are being denied access to showers and air conditioning. Cells in quarantine are not kept sanitary, and inmates have complained about vomit and feces on the floor.
It is becoming abundantly clear that South Woods is using COVID as an excuse to turn their prison into more of a torture pit than it was already. Correctional officers are using more force for smaller reasons. They are shuffling around inmates in order to retaliate for filing complaints through adverse housing assignments. This has already happened to Demi.
What Happened With Demi
When we heard Demi was being moved to another prison we assumed the worst. It didn’t occur to us that between our campaign emailing the prison about her housing assignment and her new lawyer attempting to set up a legal call, South Woods would send her for the endocrinologist appointment we had been preparing to ask for.
But that’s what happened. Demi has now had her first endocrinology appointment which will enable her to get a prescription for hormones. But the fight isn’t over yet. Demi still doesn’t have her hormones, and she is still facing mistreatment on the basis of her gender.
Demi’s lawyers will be revising the notice we intended to send South Woods officials to request a prescription for Demi to begin hormones as well as gender affirming items and housing assignments which she has been thus far denied. In the meantime, keep sending Demi mail.
Demetrius Minor #494475E
215 S. Burlington Road
Bridgeton N.J 08302