#CagingCOVID: Stopping the Spread Behind Bars

While the world is trying to flatten the curve of a pandemic without end in sight, U.S. prisons and detention centers continue to be COVID-19 hotspots, warehousing millions and failing to make the substantial populations reductions needed to create conditions of social distance.

#CagingCOVID is a campaign to shine a light on mass incarceration in a time of a public health crisis, and apply pressure to use parole, clemency and decarceration at local and federal levels to stop the spread of the virus behind bars.

Use this form to report Covid related conditions inside


Call our 24 hour hotline to tell us your story about Covid-19 and incarceration at 910-604-6519


Lavontaye Graham Pleads with Governor DeSantis to Save Lives

Sep 10, 2020 | by Panagioti Tsolkas

“Y’all see us like we’re not human.”

While hundreds of prisons across the country fail to provide adequate protections and honor health regulations during the pandemic, the incarcerated find themselves having to plead their case to the court of public opinion. Lavontaye Graham presents a case calling for compassion, bemoaning the indifference felt by too many in regards to the safety of those locked in a “pitri dish for disaster.”

#CagingCOVID Caller Submission


“Y’all see us like we’re not human, like we don’t have the right to live.”
— Lavontaye Graham

Video Submission by, Lavontaye Graham
Amended Transcription of Audio:

It’s like y’all want us to die. Y’all act like…seems like y’all see us like we’re not human, like we don’t have the right to live. They’re not walking around with no masks; they’re not taking the right precautions. It’s only a matter of time for us here. All we ask is that our voice be heard. That we get a chance to be out there with our families. Just don’t let us die in here. It’s crazy how the situation’s being handled. Somebody gotta do something. Our voices gotta be heard.

Y’all gotta have some type of compassion. This is not right. This is not fair. A lot of us wasn’t sent to death. Most of us were not sentenced to death. What makes y’all any better than the ones you all claim you’re trying to keep in here: the murderers, and the robbers and all that. What makes y’all any better if you all just wanna send us in here to die? Y’all hear about the things that’s going on in the other prisons. Y’all wanna take our communications away with these level one lock downs. This is not right. Y’all giving us a death sentence. The Governor’s giving us a death sentence. All who’s voting against letting out certain inmates and letting inmates out and stuff. This is just not right.

Y’all know it’s like a…this is a petri dish right here for disaster if it gets in here! And all they gonna try to do is confine us and lock us away. That’s why they trying to cut off the communication and lock us away. So, somebody, please hear our voice. Don’t leave us to die. It’s just that simple.

Have a story to tell? Add your story