By Lt. Rosie Thomas
During the COVID-19 pandemic, the communities near California Institution for Women have come together to help the prison’s employees. Organizations donated material to make masks while others provided completed masks.
On April 7, over 1,500 masks were received by Special Programs Capt. Joseph Spinney from the San Marino Griffin’s Lions Club. The executive staff distributed masks to all staff on various days as they entered the facility.
On April 9, over 2,000 masks and two boxes of gloves were donated by US Zhejiana Associates. Their representative, Yao Yao Yang, delivered the donation.
Nuns from the Lovers of the Holy Cross in Los Angeles made 500 masks given to prison medical staff.
Retired CIW Chaplain Lois Woodard donated 155 yards of black material, 45 spools of black thread and four rolls of black elastic so staff could make masks. She also volunteered, along with incarcerated women, to create mask kits to be handed out to staff.
The California Correctional Peace Officers Association purchased N95 masks, sending 400 to the facility where job stewards passed them out to staff.
The institution’s local chapter then purchased 500 more N95 masks to be given to staff.
Correctional Officer Q. Lan donated 500 masks liners for staff while Officer D. Rendon donated 250 masks for staff use.