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women in prison x pasadenaweekly.comBy Rady Ananda

Court appearances and visitations are being suspended as H1N1 (swine flu) appears in the prison system. At least one prison staff has contracted the disease. In May, riots broke out in a Mexico City jail when visitation was suspended. In a bizarre over-reaching decision, California suspended visitation for the entire state prison system when a possible flu case showed up in a SoCal prison. Significantly, swine flu is spreading in two Dade County, Florida prisons.

Image at PasadenaWeekly.com

June 26 In Dade County, Florida, thirteen female inmates at Homestead Correctional Institute and at least six people at Krome Detention Facility have been confirmed with H1N1. Twenty more inmates with flu symptoms were given antiviral medicine, so cannot be tested for swine flu since it invalidates the test.

June 18 Utah State Prison quarantined a 50-bed unit when three males showed flu symptoms. Court hearings were also suspended. This ban was lifted after a week when tests on several inmates came back negative.

June 16 PennsylvaniaYork County Prison initially confirmed two cases, but recently corrected that to one confirmed case. The quarantine was lifted. York County has a population of 400,000 and 37 swine flu cases. Statewide, PA has 1,148 cases.

May 20 Mexico City Reclusio Sur. Prisoners rioted when visitation was suspended.

mexico city prison riot 5-20-09 x www.thefirstpost.co.uk

Guards search inmates for weapons following a riot at Reclusio Sur jail in Mexico City. Violence erupted after visits were restricted because of the swine flu outbreak, some 18 inmates were injured. Photo: Alberto Gomez

May 20 Four confirmed and four probable H1N1 cases are reported at New York’s Rikers Island.

May 3 Public visitation at all state prisons in California was suspended after a possible case of swine flu of a single inmate at Centinela State Prison in Imperial County. Attorney and social worker visits continued but with added precautions.

May 1 In Illinois, Cook County Jail confirmed its first H1N1 case, implementing limited visitation rules.

April 29 Indiana prison bloggers reported the entire state prison system banned visitation for a week, to be reviewed on a week to week basis.

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