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COVID-19

Covid 19. Something that doesn’t discriminate against any race or people.  

Dealing with this deadly virus in prison is far more the worst because there is no such thing as social distancing. We are cooped up in one big bubble forced to eat, shower, use phones together, and sleep together. But that’s not the issue, the issue is that the staff gets to leave work and bring the virus in without getting properly tested for the virus. Instead the National Guards come in months later to check all inmates, still not testing the staff members.  

It was a horrible experience to have tested positive for Covid 19. We were punished for something that we did not bring in and still being punished til this day. Sadly inmates have lost their lives due to staff ignorance. A guy in my unit, Sanders-Bey died. I talked to this man everyday and sometimes I would bust him upside his head in playfully and take off running. He was old enough to be my father. I still can’t believe he’s gone. He had health issues but this could’ve all been avoided if staff was properly tested. I honestly believe that some officers knew they had it but still came to work. Can’t prove it but I really believe it. Not saying they were doing it to be spiteful but they did it and it was wrong.  

April 23, 2020 1:37am, I woke up with a gold glow over my body and my body had vibrations lines over it like a cartoon. I kept saying ‘What the fuck’ over and over but not trying to wake my bunky. The glow went away and so did the vibrations. I’m on the bottom bunk and I didn’t just want to stand straight up because of dizziness was one of the symptoms and I didn’t want to die hitting my head on a solid object. So I placed my feet on the floor and stood up. My bunky was still asleep so I quietly left out walking around the unit in the middle of the night repeatedly saying I’m not going to die like this. I stayed out for about 15 minutes and returned to my cell. I stayed up throughout the night until breakfast, afraid to go to sleep because I might not wake up. I stayed up until 1:49 pm and took an allergy tablet and Alka-Seltzer and went to sleep. I woke up around 5 o’clock and I felt better. All of this was wrote in my journal. 

I thought it was over but that was the only the beginning. I woke up with the chills at first and that lasted for about two days. Blood clots came next and they were in my right foot and still to this day I still feel it. Nausea, then loss of appetite, I say lasted for about three days. Diarrhea came next and I knew I had it but I figured like it would be gone soon and also just be cautious of people around me because I didn’t want them to catch it.  

We weren’t given the proper ppe to actually clean and on top of it we were given watered down bleach. I still continued to help and clean even though the facility did not provide the proper equipment to clean.  

No one wanted to alert the staff that they were infected because of how they were screwing over your property. Taking your food and throwing things away that didn’t fit in your property. So that detoured people from ‘checking in’. I lost my taste and smell on the 14th of May. I tested positive on the 18th. My loss of smell and taste lasted almost two weeks. They had me and my bunky along with forty other inmates in our unit moved to an iso unit. Showering three times a week, receiving cold meals three times a day. Only getting thirty minutes of yard three times out of the week. Understand that we are true level 2’s and we were being punished for a heinous act committed by staff. I stayed isolated for almost a month. By me not eating meat I had to get special trays which were not delivered to me sometimes. I had to call home to have them make calls to this facility complaining about me not being fed especially during a pandemic like this putting me in more danger because you need the proper nutrition to keep your immune system up to fight off the virus. I suffered and I don’t want to say all staff but most didn’t care about whether I ate. It was one officer who retired when asked could you please see if my tray came because all the others were already eating. He stated ‘You don’t need a tray, you have enough food in your locker to last you for three weeks’. That was neither here nor there if I had food, I was entitled to eat just like the rest of the inmates. So I have been writing them up every time I felt like they violated my human rights. I’m in the process right now of taking it to court. I have saved up funds to make sure I was ready to pay for the cost.  

I sat there waiting for my results and I had tested positive again and my bunky tested negative. We needed two negatives to leave the iso unit. We we were only suppose to be there for 8 days. Now to remind you we weren’t allowed to bring none of our property except 2 pair of under garments, one towel and wash cloth, legal work, hygiene, TV and your tablet. I was smart enough to smuggle my fan, more under garments, and food. The rooms were extra hot and the doors were shut all day. It was a timer on the toilet which only allows you to flush every 5 minutes and if you don’t, the toilet will lock leaving urine or defecation in the toilet. The officers in the iso unit were reasonable. They did let us shower if they had enough time on the days we weren’t suppose to. No Sgt, lieut, or Capt. made rounds in that unit. Only one and that was deputy Schooley and I thanked him personally. Me and my next door neighbor fought everyday trying to get yard, phone usage, and Jpay time. It worked out but it took days before we could see some progress.  

I got back to my unit on June 11th. Same room and same bunky, thank God.

The gold glow came from me hallucinating, not getting enough oxygen to the brain.  

I’m a survivor of Covid 19 but still a victim of the MDOCs neglect.

Chris Clark

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