The Supreme Judicial Court on Tuesday morning is scheduled to hear oral arguments related to an emergency petition to reduce the state’s population of incarcerated people as a growing number of inmates test positive for COVID-19.

Prisoner advocates, state officials and law enforcement are slated to speak in the virtual hearing addressing the petition filed last week by the Massachusetts Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and the Committee for Public Counsel Services.

The hearing comes as the number of inmates infected by COVID-19 increases in Massachusetts. The state Department of Correction said Monday there were 21 confirmed cases of the virus among inmates and staff at the Massachusetts Treatment Center in Bridgewater, which houses male sex offenders, an increase of 14 on Friday.

Monday’s numbers included 17 inmates, three corrections officials and a medical provider at the treatment center. They also includes one staff member who works at DOC central office and another the Massachusetts Correctional Institution in Shirley, state officials said.

Also Monday, the Massachusetts Sheriff’s Association reported that 14 employees and two inmates have confirmed COVID-19 cases in the state’s county jail systems. Those include two inmates being held at the Middlesex Jail and House of Correction.

Prisoners advocates worried that the virus will move more quickly in the prison and jail system where social distancing is a challenge and soap and disinfectant can be hard to come by.

Randy Gioai, deputy chief counsel for the Public Defender Division at the Committee for Public Counsel Services, said he’s worried that rising number of cases at the Massachusetts Treatment Center is a sign of what’s to come across the system if the state doesn’t act to reduce numbers.

“We’ve got to reduce the population to the degree we can, safely,’’ he said. “I’m scared that people are going to die.”