Correctional Service Canada (CSC) advises that there are currently two inmates who have tested positive for COVID-19 at the Edmonton Institution for Women (EIFW) in Alberta. The institution’s routine has been modified for health purposes, and contact tracing has been thoroughly conducted.
The index, or first, case is an inmate who is newly committed to CSC’s custody. The second case is a close contact. Both inmates are being medically isolated and are closely monitored by staff. Close contacts of the symptomatic individuals are also self-isolating and have been tested.
CSC is working closely with the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) and local public health authorities. At this time, EIFW is not accommodating visits. Decisions regarding access to the site and programs and services being provided are made in consultation with public health authorities.
We recognize the importance of strong infection prevention and control protocols to contain the spread of COVID-19. We are monitoring this situation closely and diligently, and we continue to apply our infection prevention and control measures. We continue to actively screen employees entering all our institutions, and, all employees and inmates at EIFW are equipped with medical masks and face shields. We have also increased cleaning and disinfecting at EIFW.
The health and safety of offenders, our employees, and the public remains our top priority throughout this public health pandemic. There were five outbreaks at CSC institutions in the first wave of the pandemic. All were declared over as of June 17, 2020. There has not been a positive COVID-19 case among federal inmates for close to five months.
We are committed to reducing the risks of COVID-19 in our operations and keeping inmates, our employees, and the public safe. We will continue to work with our public health partners, as well as engage with unions and stakeholders in taking the necessary steps to ensure everyone’s safety.