In-person visitation at state-run prisons reinstated after being paused by COVID surge

Louisiana

Louisiana State Police building in Baton Rouge

BATON ROUGE, La. (KLFY) — Starting on Monday, Oct. 18, the Louisiana Department of Public Safety and Corrections (DPS&C) will begin phasing in visitation across its state-run prisons. In-person visitation was suspended at the end of July due to Louisiana’s fourth surge of COVID-19.

DPS&C, in consultation with the Louisiana Department of Health (LDH), has determined that as the COVID numbers continue to decline, and the vaccination rates among prisoners and the general public increase, the current environment is suitable to resume visitation.

The Department has also approved general reopening plans for its facilities and continues to monitor the current status of COVID-19 in the public and in its prisons

The DPS&C said in a press release that maintaining in-person connections with loved ones is critical to a person’s success in prison.

Prisons have educated their inmate populations on the processes and procedures of visitation during the COVID-19 pandemic. At all institutions, visitors must be on the inmate’s approved visitation list in order to be eligible to visit.

Visitation procedures include the following safety measures:

  • Social distancing guidelines shall be in place for the duration of the visit
  • Upon entrance to the prison, all visitors will be screened for signs and symptoms of COVID-19, which includes having their temperature checked
  • All persons are required to wear protective face coverings for the duration of the visit
  • All visitation areas and transport vehicles shall be sanitized prior to and between visits
  • Hand sanitizer shall be available in all visitation areas
  • Contact visitation requires that both the visitors and the inmate are fully vaccinated
  • Non-contact visits are required if the inmate or visitor is unvaccinated; non-contact visits require plexiglass separation barriers between the visitor and the prisoner
  • Visitation hours, days, and duration and the number of allowed visitors vary by institution

The DPS&C originally suspended visitation on March 12, 2020, to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 and protect staff and inmates at the state’s institutions. Visitation resumed on March 13, 2021, and when COVID-19 infections surged, the Department suspended visitation again on July 26, 2021. The Department created a webpage at doc.la.gov with COVID-19 information to keep relatives, loved ones, and the general public informed on the latest developments concerning the pandemic.

Visitation will resume on the following days with the following visitation schedules. Visitation must be scheduled in advance by contacting the prison. All visitors must be on the prisoner’s visitation list and be 14 years of age and older.

Monday, October 18, 2021

  • Dixon Correctional Institute – 7 days a week, 8 a.m. – 4:45 p.m.
  • David Wade Correctional Center – Monday – Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.
  • Elayn Hunt Correctional Center – 7 days a week, 7:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Tuesday, October 19, 2021

  • Rayburn Correctional Center – Tuesday & Wednesday (max. custody), Thursday – Sunday (medium and minimum custody), 8 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Saturday, October 23, 2021

  • Allen Correctional Center – Saturday & Sunday, 7:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
  • Raymond Laborde Correctional Center – Saturday & Sunday (general population), third Thursday of the month (segregated housing), 8:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.

Sunday, October 24, 2021

  • Louisiana Correctional Institute for Women – at Hunt & Jetson – Saturday & Sunday, 8 a.m. – 4 p.m., at Louisiana State Penitentiary – Friday – Sunday (orderlies), 8 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Saturday, October 30, 2021

  • Louisiana State Penitentiary – Saturday & Sunday, 8 a.m. – 4 p.m.

To schedule a visit or get more information about an institution’s visitation, contact the facility’s Visitation Department at the following numbers and times:

  • Allen Correctional Center – 9 – 11:30 a.m. & 1 – 3:30 p.m., Monday – Friday, at (337) 389-6029
  • David Wade Correctional Center – 8:30 – 11 a.m. & 12:30 – 3:30 p.m., Monday – Friday at (318) 927-0400
  • Dixon Correctional Institute – 8 a.m. – 4 p.m., Monday – Friday, at (225) 634-6291
  • Elayn Hunt Correctional Center – 7 a.m. – 5 p.m., Monday – Friday, at (225) 319-4559 or (225) 319-4364.
  • Louisiana Correctional Institute for Women – 8 a.m. – 4 p.m., Monday – Friday, at (225) 319-2324
  • Louisiana State Penitentiary – 9 a.m. – 3 p.m., Monday – Friday, at (225) 655-2343
  • Rayburn Correctional Center – 8 a.m. – 4 p.m., Monday – Friday, at (985) 661-6380
  • Raymond Laborde Correctional Center – 8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m., Monday – Friday, at (318) 876-2891 ext. 268

For more information on reopening plans and visitation hours, visit the Department’s COVID-19 webpage at doc.la.gov.

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