How Covid Hits Prisons: One Assemblywoman’s Stand

For Carmen De La Rosa, criminal justice reform is personal

This winter, Assemblywoman Carmen De La Rosa toured Fishkill Correctional Facility in Beacon, New York and saw what she calls “inhumane” conditions allowing the spread of COVID-19 there. Ever since, De La Rosa has been publicly speaking out about the conditions in New York State prisons.

De La Rosa grew up in Inwood, the area she now represents in the 72nd district in Manhattan. De La Rosa’s approach to criminal justice reform is driven by the families in her district who are directly impacted by incarceration. She says they feel powerless against the criminal justice system.

“That is what drives me every day—to try and find legislative solutions to the pain that I hear firsthand from the families of incarcerated people around New York State,” De La Rosa said.

De La Rosa joins Kate Christobek in the NY City Lens studio for a conversation about what she saw at Fishkill and her advocacy for the incarcerated people of New York State.

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