Class representatives of thousands of detained immigrants currently housed in private prison facilities operated by the GEO Group are seeking an emergency order from a California federal court to protect their health and safety in light of the growing COVID-19 crisis.
The filing alleges that prison officials have failed to provide personal protective equipment, soap, and disinfectant for detainees who are forced to clean and sanitize common areas in the company’s facilities across the nation.
“The court certified a nationwide class to put an end to the illegal use of unpaid, forced labor that drives GEO’s profits,” said Daniel Charest of Burns Charest LLP, one of the attorneys for the class. “Now with the spread of COVID-19, GEO’s unlawful practices could turn deadly. This has to stop now.”
To address the risk of exposure, the proposed order would require GEO to stop using detainee labor for general sanitation, or to provide protective clothing and antiseptic supplies to those performing these tasks.
For more information, please contact Barry Pound at 800-559-4630 or firstname.lastname@example.org.