Coronavirus - 2020

The world changed in 2020 and everyone was forced to react to an unprecedented global health crisis. Correctional institutions were not immune to this pandemic. This collection of resources highlights many of the developing insights throughout the first year of the crisis and how corrections facilities and agencies were reacting to the problems they faced.

For more on this topic, please see our Coronavirus resources https://nicic.gov/coronavirus

About 600,000 Americans have died of COVID-19 since the coronavirus outbreak began. But behind that huge figure is a more nuanced one that brings the human toll of the virus into even sharper relief.

In addition to the overall number of deaths from a given cause, researchers can estimate the number of “life years” lost due to it – a statistic that takes life expectancy into account. For example, if a person with a life expectancy of 80 dies at age 50, they are estimated to have lost 30 years of life. Examining this statistic underscores the extent to which the virus has cut Americans’ lives short.

In 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic affected drastically all forms of human mobility, including international migration. Around the globe, the closing of national borders and severe disruptions to international travel obliged hundreds of thousands of people to cancel or delay plans of moving abroad. Hundreds of thousands of migrants were stranded, unable to return to their countries, while others were forced to return to their home countries earlier than planned, when job opportunities dried up and schools closed.

This report provides criminal justice policymakers and practitioners with a priority agenda to prepare the nation’s criminal justice system for future public health crises. Through its recommendations, the Commission seeks to better balance the roles and responsibilities of the public health and public safety fields.