To shelter inside has been the advice given to the public by health officials to help slow down the spread of COVID-19, also known as the novel coronavirus.
However, for inmates at Rikers Island exposure to the virus may be imminent as an inmate tested positive for COVID-19 earlier this week. This is the first case of the COVID-19 virus amongst a person in custody in New York City..
With the only way to slow down the spread of the virus is to practice social distancing, the question has been raised - what will officials do to slow down the spread of the virus amongst inmates?
There are no reports on the severity of the inmates condition as he is being monitored by Correctional Health Services, according to the Daily News.
New York’s mayor, Bill de Blasio, made a statement shortly after the news broke stating that the Mayor's Office of Criminal Justice is working to identify those who are at high risk of contracting the virus.
With over 5,400 inmates in Rikers Island, some advocates believe the only solution is to drastically decrease the number of prisoners.
There has not been any other statements made about how the situation is being handled.