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Actual grievance by Perryville inmate. Names deleted to protect the guilty.
Attached are the actual reports files, with all names redacted. Click on image to see all 7 pages.
Here are 2 inmates with COPD from inhaling second-hand smoke. Both began to get symptoms some years into their incarceration at Perryville.
A.G.V: “I am a life long non-smoker. After 10 years incarcerated in Oklahoma, I was transported to Perryville prison. There is no smoking in Oklahoma so I arrived here with no health problems. After a few years I had trouble catching my breath after walking. We are all connected through the same ventilation system and the girls smoke in their rooms after lock-down. The guards do absolutely nothing to enforce the no-smoking ban in the cells. In fact, they light the girls’ cigarettes for them! Corizon denies I have COPD, but doctors on the outside say I have it. I’m now confined to a wheelchair, and can only walk a few yards. In the meantime, I’m still breathing my roommates’ smoke.”
T.J.M. [another life-time non-smoker]: “I got symptoms of COPD after 10 years of incarceration in Perryville prison. My shortness of breath and pains in my chest continued to get worse. Last year I had my first heart attack and was sent tot he hospital. The doctors that treated me insisted I must be a smoker as they could smell it on me when I was admitted. “this kind of lung damage can only come from smoking” they said. I swear I have never used tonbacco products of any kind. Other smokers put me in this wheelchair.”
This I/M (inmate) arrived at Perryville in November of 1997. She was 52 years old at the time, and had never smoked.
The AZDOC was always lax about enforcing the no-smoking in the room policy, but in the 90’s apparently it was non-existent. Her roommates smoke in the room with her. additionally, the cells are connected by ducts, so she got hit with smoke from others too, sort of like a gas chamber from which there is no escape.
In 2003 she started to notice she was short of breath. Then, in 2005 she was hospitalized for a “light” heart attack. This was when the doctors first diagnosed C.O.P.D from smoking. Of course, she told them she had never smoked in her life, but that she was continually subjected to second-hand smoke at the prison.
After I/M 1997 returned to Perryville her “provider” changed the diagnosis from C.O.P.D. to asthma! The prison doctors kept telling her to stop smoking, despite her insistence that she never smoked.
In 2006,, 2007, and 2008 this I/M was sent to hospital for various heart problems. Finally she was sent off-site to a pulmonary specialist, and her returned a verdict of C.O.P.D. due to second-hand smoke!
In December of 2018 she was informed that she has heart failure and her condition continues to deteriorate.
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