Northwestern Prison Education Program Raises Funds to Fight Spread of COVID in Prisons


The  Northwestern Prison Education Program (NPEP), led by Northwestern University Professor of Philosophy Jennifer Lackey, has been raising funds and purchasing supplies to combat the spread of COVID-19 among prison populations in Illinois.

The situation in prisons is particularly bad, as Professor Lackey writes:

As many of you know, COVID-19 is having devastating effects inside prisons and jails in Illinois. The Cook County Jail is now home to the single largest COVID-19 cluster in the country with over 500 confirmed cases among people who are incarcerated and staff members, and Stateville Correctional Center reports almost 200 confirmed cases. At least 6 incarcerated individuals in Stateville, and at least 3 in Cook County Jail, have died and dozens are in intensive care. 

Here’s what NPEP has done so far:

To contribute to statewide efforts to mitigate the effects of COVID-19 inside prisons and jails, NPEP has been raising funds to buy hand sanitizer, soap, face masks, and gloves. Through this community’s incredible generosity, we have already raised over $25,000. These funds have supported the purchase and delivery of the following items to Stateville Correctional Center, Logan Correctional Center, Cook County Jail, and the Juvenile Detention Center in St. Charles:
◾️ 10,400 bars of soap
◾️ 260 Gallons of hand sanitizer from Koval Distillery in Chicago
◾️ 10,000 Nitrile gloves
◾️ 4,800 face masks
◾️ 1,000 individual 0.5 oz hand-sanitizers
◾️ 20+ gallons of lab-manufactured hand-sanitizer from Northwestern’s Office of Research Safety

As the virus continues spreading and infection rates keep growing within prisons, NPEP will be continuing its work. Here are some ways you can help:

◾️ Monetary donations can be sent via Venmo to: @NPEP-Donations
◾️ Monetary donations can be made through our Northwestern University We Will campaign link.
◾️ Physical items can be dropped off to the porch of the NPEP office at 405 Church Street, Evanston, Illinois, 60201 (Please notify Anne d’Aquino when you are dropping off items or, if drop off is not an option, to arrange a pick-up: [email protected] or 224-420-7096)

Professor Lackey adds: “Thank you so much for any help you might be able to provide to keep one of the most vulnerable populations safe during this challenging time!”


Related: Philosopher-Led Prison Education Program Receives $1 Million GrantFrom Prison in Illinois to Publication in The New Yorker with Help from a Philosophy Professor.

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