Prison Visits in North Carolina Suspended
Due to the Coronavirus, visitation of inmates housed within the NC Division of Prisons will be suspended starting March 16, 2020.
The hope is to avoid spreading the Coronavirus and COVID-19 to a population of people who have little control over their surroundings.
Thus far, there does not appear to be any reported cases of COVID-19 in the North Carolina Prison System.
Governor Cooper issued a State of Emergency on March 10, 2020 due to the public health concerns associated with the virus.
The NC DHHS Department of Health and Human Services and the Governor’s Coronavirus Disease Task Force, on March 12, 2020, recommended taking steps to reduce exposure to and spreading the infection.
One such recommendation is to restrict access to the NC State Prison correction facilities.
The Commissioner of NC Prisons is reported as saying, “We have made this difficult decision. . .to reduce the risk of this disease getting into prisons. . .”
"Relying on the Department of the Health and Human Services, limiting if not eliminating access to prisoners is intended to keep them healthy."
- Bill Powers, Charlotte Criminal Lawyers
Suspension of visitation for friends and family to the NC prison system will last at least thirty (30) days. The North Carolina Department of Public Safety will review access into the prison system every month.
The prison system is a “division” of NC DPS and is formally known as the “Division of Prisons.”
Prisoners will, hopefully, be given greater access to call family and friends.
They also are slated to be given additional recreation time during the period of suspended visitation.
Visits by volunteers are similarly suspended for thirty days.
Legal visits by criminal defense lawyers will continue, as will those of pastors and preachers.
Assuming criminal lawyers or appellate counsel wish to visit their clients in prison, they will be subject to medical screening prior to being allowed into the prison facility.
North Carolina is not the only state that has limited in-person access to inmates in the NC State Prison system.
Other states in the region are taking similar measures to protect prison staff and prisoners alike.
The Division of Prisons in North Carolina is also taking steps such as:
- Screening before transportation to the prison
- Inmates will be isolated if they have symptoms of possible exposure to the Coronavirus
- All “new offenders” will also be screened for the virus
- In the event an offender screens “positive,” the source of exposure will be investigated
- Cleaning and Sterilization will be enhanced
- Juvenile Justice Facilities (Detention Facilities) will be subject to “increased cleaning regimens”
- There will be an increased supply of disinfectants at all prison and juvenile justice facilities
- Alcohol-based sanitizers are prohibited in NC prisons
- Soap and non-alcohol-based lotions will be provided by “Correction Enterprises”
- North Carolina Coronavirus Response
- COVID 19 – CDC United States Center for Disease Control
- Inmate Locator – NC Division of Prisons
- NC Court Date Update – Coronavirus 2020
- Will my case be continued?
- “Lawyer of the Year” recognitions - “Best Lawyers in America” – Bill Powers – Bio and Criterion for Inclusion
- Bill Powers – Super Lawyers NC Magazine – Biography and Criterion for Inclusion
- Lawyer Rating and Reviews – JUSTIA – Bill Powers – Criminal Defense Lawyers in Charlotte NC
Our team of criminal defense lawyers in Charlotte are dedicated to helping people, which necessarily includes providing information.
If you have questions about court calendaring, the jails, or visitation, please do not hesitate in calling our Charlotte law firm.
For criminal matters, we do not charge consultation fees. Legal consultations are also protected by something called the Attorney-Client Privilege.
That means what you share with your attorney, either in consultation and/or as part of legal representation remains confidential.
Put simply, we keep your case and confidences secret.
You may reach Bill Powers at the office by calling 704-342-4357
Bill also responds to individual emails to Bill@CarolinaAttorneys.com