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Spokane's Leading Local News: Weather, Traffic, Sports and more | Spokane, Washington | KREM.com

Families of Airway Heights inmates protest over COVID-19 outbreak, living conditions

Airway Heights Corrections Center has reported 792 cumulative cases of coronavirus among inmates since Nov. 30, the most of any Washington correctional facility.
Credit: KREM

SPOKANE, Wash. — Editor's note: The above video is from previous reporting on the COVID-19 outbreak at the Airway Heights Corrections Center.

The families of inmates at Airway Heights Corrections Center are staging a protest Saturday over the COVID-19 outbreak at the facility, and the conditions inmates are experiencing inside the facility. 

Airway Heights Corrections Center has reported 792 cumulative cases of coronavirus among inmates since Nov. 30, the most of any Washington correctional facility. 

Conditions on isolation floors are unbearable, according to an inmate who did a phone interview with KREM 2. Tobin Sather, an inmate at the correctional facility, reported that 70 to 80 inmates are forced to use one toilet. Sather also reported that many inmates haven't been able to take showers or have clean clothes in weeks. 

RELATED: 'Everything is upside down': Airway Heights inmate shares unbearable conditions while fighting COVID-19

Sather also said there are 125 COVID-19 positive inmates being housed in the gym on the floor. 

The DOC would not directly confirm this, but said the capacity in the gym is 155 and inmates are being provided cots from the Red Cross.

The DOC hasn't confirmed how many toilets are broken or available for inmates to use.

As for showers, the DOC said its protocols for medical isolation continue to develop. Current protocols dictate that patients in medical isolation should be offered a shower starting on the seventh day of isolation.

Staff have been required to wearing face coverings since April 10, 2020, a spokesperson said. The DOC recently began requiring all departmental staff, contract staff and persons entering all department locations to wear surgical masks, according to a November 6 memo.