The Illinois Sheriff's Association has filed a lawsuit against Governor JB Pritzker and the Illinois Department of Corrections, saying that IDOC has refused to accept transfers of, "parole violators or convicted individuals" from jails across the state.
In a statement, ISA criticizes IDOC for allegedly not implementing preparations to reduce the spread of COVID-19 after having time to do so.
On March 26, Gov. Pritzker suspended all admissions to IDOC facilities in response to the global COVID-19 pandemic.
ISA says that at the time, the leaders at IDOC said they needed time to prepare and install proper intake procedures to reduce the spread of the virus from inmates transferred out of County Jails.
However, ISA claims that, "no such preparations have been made or implemented, despite repeated discussions between members of the ISA and IDOC" and "rather than working together with the Sheriffs to find ways to uphold the law while reducing the spread of COVID-19, IDOC has simply shut its doors."
The sheriff's association says that sheriff's are bearing the burden and they argue that jails continue to accept new arrestees and manage the spread of the virus.
They also raise health concerns that sheriff's are managing, "those who should be in custody at IDOC " and are not at a time when, "space and inmate population are critical components to battling the spread of the virus."
You can view the full statement from ISA, here:
In response to the lawsuit, IDOC released a statement saying they remain,"focused on responding, mitigating and controlling COVID-19 to protect those who live and work in our facilities."
IDOC said that due to the pending litigation they could provide no further comment.