In a major outbreak of scabies in the Tennessee Prison System, female inmates are transmitting the skin disease back and forth to one another.
Scabies is an itchy, highly contagious skin disease caused by an infestation by the itch mite Sarcoptes scabiei. Mites are small eight-legged parasites (in contrast to insects, which have six legs).
In a Nashville privately operated jail however, female inmates are being threatened with solitary confinement over even discussing the cause behind the vicious outbreak.
In a Federal Lawsuit filed against the privately owned jail, inmates are claiming that they've been subjected to harsh punishments that exceed the powers of the jail authorities simply for speaking about the transmission.
The Federal Lawsuit states the following, “CoreCivic officers began threatening Plaintiff and other inmates that if they mentioned the word ‘scabies,’ complained about it, or filed a grievance, they would be placed in solitary confinement," the lawsuit states.
It went on to say that, “Inmates attempted to inform their family members about the scabies infestation over the phone and asked their families to research scabies on their behalf. Because (CoreCivic) monitors all phone calls, those inmates immediately had their phone privileges revoked, in retaliation for attempting to bring light to the epidemic.”
CoreCivic is the privately owned company which employs all corrections officers are the privately owned jail. Such is a common occurrence in America as the prison system is privatized in many areas hence creating what is now known as the Prison Industrial System. Incarceration for profit.
The inmates have made several allegations of threats against their well being, retaliation such as severe punishments or extreme duties, and even suggest the officers have denied medical treatment to them in the 21-page lawsuit.
The lawsuit intends to seek class action status for all female inmates who have suffered or will suffer from a scabies outbreak that began in one domain or “pod” of the jail which houses only a hundred or so inmates.
However due to failed cover-ups and mishandling of the outbreak the jail earlier this month had to provide treatment for all inmates at the 1,300-bed facility and many local courthouse workers and employees within the facility as well.
The outbreak occurred at the Metro-Davidson County Detention Facility, operated by CoreCivic, a Nashville-based private prison company previously known as Corrections Corporation of America or CCA
CoreCivic however has denied the Allegations and tried to downplay the scenario and possible implications of the actions taken by their officers and staff. Many local and state lawmakers have criticized the prison industrial system calling it both incompetent and immoral to profit off incarceration.
Advocates for prisoner's rights suggest that by profiting off a prison system prosecutors, district attorneys, and judges are more likely to sentence nonviolent inmates to do hard time behind bars as they'll receive a bonus or campaign contribution from the private industries which house the inmates.