COVID-19 Information for ADOC Employees
Maintaining the safety, security, and well-being of our inmate population, staff, and the public is the Alabama Department of Corrections’ (ADOC) highest priority. The ADOC has been working closely with Governor Kay Ivey’s Coronavirus (COVID-19) Task Force, the Alabama Department of Public Health (ADPH), and numerous infectious disease control experts to prepare for and prevent the potential spread of the SARS-CoV-2 virus and the disease it causes, COVID-19), which could significantly impact our operations.
The ADOC recognizes that the proactive, preventative measures we are implementing will be disruptive, including to you. We ask for your patience and understanding, knowing that changes are being put in place for the sole purpose of protecting our inmates, our staff, and those around you. This situation is unprecedented in our lifetimes, and necessary action must be taken.
On Sunday, March 15, Governor Ivey issued a memo directing state agencies to allow “non-essential employees” to work from home, if feasible. The ADOC defines “essential” functions as jobs that must be performed on-premises to maintain critical services, and “non-essential” as those which are necessary but can be performed remotely or from home. Currently, our wardens and division directors are developing strategic plans that will outline which job functions must be performed on-site, and which can be performed off-site.
It is absolutely essential that we maintain critical services, and to effectively do so the Department will need its staff to perform both “essential” and “non-essential” functions. Employees currently performing non-essential functions may be reassigned to perform essential duties. All employees deemed to be performing essential functions will be expected to report to work as scheduled, unless arrangements are made for essential functions to be performed from home or via an altered schedule (e.g., rotating shifts/hours, etc.).
There currently are no confirmed cases of COVID-19 within any ADOC facilities. Below is an overview of the system-wide preventative measures that have been in place to help ensure we keep this disease from impacting our correctional system:
- In the coming days, all staff will be screened prior to entering the facilities by having their temperature taken. If the individual’s temperature is greater than 100.4, they will be restricted from entering the institution that day. All employees will have temperature screening at the beginning of each shift statewide.
- The ADOC must maintain critical services; however, any staff who can perform their job functions remotely will be asked to do so per Governor Ivey’s recommendations.
- All visitation, inmate passes, tours, and volunteer entry into our facilities are suspended statewide for 30 days.
- All Work Release and Work Center Programs are suspended for 30 days – no offsite assignments will be permitted.
- All inmates will be provided one free call per week (up to 15 minutes) and extended hours of availability.
- All inmate co-pays (including for medical services not directly related to COVID-19) are suspended for 60 days.
- All non-emergent inmate community physician appointments and procedures are suspended for 30 days.
- The ADOC is working with local oncologists to ensure inmates who require chemotherapy continue to receive treatment.
- Inmate transfers between facilities are suspended (security and healthcare exceptions may be granted)
- Vocational classes offered to inmates through J.F. Ingram State Technical College will be closed from March 17 – April 30, 2020.
- General legal visits conducted in-person by attorneys with inmates will be suspended for 30 days. Requests by counsel for an in-person meeting due to urgent matters will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Attorney visits also will be accommodated by confidential phone calls.
- The correctional officer candidate on-site testing event scheduled to occur at Bibb Correctional Facility on March 20, Fountain Correctional Facility on April 24 are postponed until further notice.
- All senior leadership and regional trainings are postponed.
- ADOC Academy will continue operations at this time, with proper precautionary measures in place to protect trainees and staff.
- CDC- and ADPH-approved signage detailing preventative recommendations, signs, and symptoms of COVID-19, and other helpful information is being posted throughout ADOC facilities.
- All ADOC facilities will be sanitized with CDC-recommended cleaning supplies at an increased frequency to reduce the spread of virulent matter.
Due to the unique aspects of each of our facilities and their respective populations, the ADOC remains agile at the institution level regarding how we will address any potential case of COVID-19 based on the factors and risks related to individual cases.
We are closely monitoring the spread of COVID-19, and will be making additional operational and preventative decisions as this situation continues to evolve while keeping our primary directive – maintaining the safety and security of our inmate population, staff, and the public – top of mind at all times. The ADOC will continue to post all public updates for family and friends of incarcerated individuals, as well as the media, on this website page.
- ADOC Employee Update
- 10 ways to manage respiratory symptoms at home
- Employee Rights - Medical Leave