OCO: CRCC COVID-19 Outbreak Investigation Report

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Good morning. Please find attached OCO’s investigation report into the COVID-19 outbreak that occurred at the Coyote Ridge Corrections Center in May. This incident was the largest single outbreak to occur in a WA DOC prison to date (although I note that positive cases at the Washington State Penitentiary are currently rising and likely to overtake CRCC’s numbers). The purpose of the investigation was to bring transparency to DOC’s actions, both positive and negative, and to provide a roadmap of recommendations to DOC to assist them in preventing future similar outbreaks. We know that COVID-19 will enter the prisons. The question is how far it will spread and how much damage it will do. We hope that this report helps DOC to manage and mitigate the outbreaks that it faces. I am also attaching DOC's response to the report, which I feel is comprehensive.


OCO has been invited to present this report and related reports to the Senate Human Services, Reentry, and Rehabilitation committee this Wednesday at 10:30. We appreciate the invitation and look forward to that discussion. It will be available for viewing by the public via TVW.


You can also find attached OCO’s monthly outcome report for October, which provides a summary of all cases that we closed in that month. This is our second such report and we will be publishing it each month on an ongoing basis on our website. This report provides transparency into OCO and the complaints that we receive, as well as the concerns being reported from and regarding the incarcerated population.


In addition, I wanted to let you know that there is a Family Forum planned for TOMORROW, December 1, from 2:30-3:30 pm related to the current contract renegotiation that is occurring related to JPAY and GTL. The Family Forum is an effort by DOC to provide an update to the public, answer questions, and provide current information prior to a final decision being made. Below is the call-in information:

Microsoft Teams meeting

Join on your computer or mobile app

Click here to join the meeting

Or call in (audio only)

+1 253-372-2181,,203341247#   United States, Tacoma

Phone Conference ID: 203 341 247#

Last, please know that OCO continues to hold a weekly phone call with the public on Thursdays from 4-5 pm. Call-in information is (360) 407-3831; 821205#. For this week, I have a conflicting appointment, so I will not be there. Recognizing that many people will have a concern related to rising cases on the Eastern side, however, Caitlin Robertson, Assistant Ombuds - Eastern Division, will be hosting the phone call in my place.

I hope everyone stays safe and healthy during this time.


Joanna Signature

Joanna Carns, OCO Director