Massachusetts legislators urge Gov. Baker to quicken inmate releases

Waltham Tribune

A group of concerned legislators — 15 state senators and 23 state representatives — have sent a joint letter to Gov. Charlie Baker, urging him, as part of the state’s response to the COVID-19 Health Crisis, to step up the screening and release of inmates from Massachusetts penal institutions.

The letter-writing effort, initiated by State Sen. Mike Barrett, D-Lexington, was inspired by an opinion issued earlier this month by the state’s supreme judicial court, five of whose seven current members are Baker appointees.

“Among inmates and correctional officers — we’re concerned about both — the positive cases continue to climb,” said Barrett. “We think it’s quite significant that the court has issued polite but pointed advice on how to speed up the pace of releases.”