'It's a petri dish': COVID-19 changing rules at EMDC
LONDON, ONT. -- The province is clamping down on visitors to jails, including the Elgin Middlesex Detention Centre (EMDC), to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
The move comes on the heels of a Coroner’s Inquest looking into the drug overdose deaths of two inmates at EMDC.
“We’ve already instituted a number of measures,“ says Sylvia Jones, Ontario’s Solicitor General. “People who are serving weekend sentences no longer have to go into the institution.”
Concerns about the conditions inside are being raised by the families of inmates who have died at the EMDC.
“There’s how many people in there right now? We’re only supposed to be in groups of 50,” says Lisa Davis, the mother of Murray Davis, who died inside the jail.
Kevin Egan, the lawyer for the families at the inquest, also has fears.
“It’s a petri dish,” Egan says of EMDC. “The place is filthy to begin with, it’s vastly overcrowded…if COVID-19 gets into EMDC, it’s going to spreads like wildfire.”
On Monday a jury made 80 recommendations to help avoid future deaths at the jail including replacing the building with a new facility.