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Nurse Working in Immigration Detention Tests Positive for COVID-19


A nurse at the Bristol County correctional complex in Dartmouth has tested positive for COVID-19. She worked with immigration detainees, who sleep in a communal bunkroom.


The Bristol County sheriff’s office told WCAI the nurse worked in the women’s jail and the immigration detention center the night she fell ill. The immigration center sleeps 44 people to a room, in bunk beds set fewer than six feet apart.


It was not clear whether the nurse worked in the non-immigration men’s units in the days prior.


Bristol County Sheriff Thomas Hodgson said the National Guard has put up heated medical tents outside the jail in case the number of patients exceeds the capacity to care for them indoors.


According to Hodgson, no inmates, detainees or other staff have tested positive or shown symptoms.


The Boston-based advocacy group Lawyers for Civil Rights has filed a class action lawsuit against Hodgson and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement seeking humanitarian release for all civil immigration detainees at the Dartmouth facility.

Jennette Barnes is a reporter and producer. Named a Master Reporter by the New England Society of News Editors, she brings more than 20 years of news experience to CAI.