Criminal Justice, Mass Incarceration, and COVID-19: Understanding Prison Health and Prison Health Activism in the United States
This senior thesis project, tentatively titled "Criminal Justice, Mass Incarceration, and COVID-19: Understanding Prison Health and Prison Health Activism in the United States," studies recent and longer threads of social and historical context from the twentieth century to the present to better understand the disproportionate impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on incarcerated individuals in the United States and construct a deeper overview of prison health in the country. It aims to draw connections between history and the COVID-19 pandemic, revealing the broader attitudes and challenges toward advancing the health and human rights of incarcerated people in the United States and further examining discourse at the intersection of health, criminal justice, and mass incarceration.
Drawing on past outbreaks in America's correctional facilities and instances of unethical experimentation behind bars, this research explores the following question: Why has the COVID-19 pandemic disproportionately impacted incarcerated individuals in the United States? Why is the nation's incarcerated population so medically vulnerable to the novel coronavirus?
An important note is that the work for this project is still ongoing. The material in this presentation reflects the research completed so far.