Michigan prisons to resume in-person visits as pandemic eases

March 12, 2021, 3:39 PM by  Violet Ikonomova

After a yearlong visitation ban to stem the spread of Covid-19, the Michigan Department of Corrections will soon let members of the general public back into its facilities to see loved ones.

The change goes into effect March 26 and comes with additional safety precautions, including a temperature check and a rapid antigen test for visitors and inmates they'll see.

MDOC Director Heidi Washington says it's a recognition of the importance of in-person visits.

“Connections with family and the community lead to greater offender success," Washington said in announcing the news. "With the continuation of vaccines and cases within the MDOC on a steady decline the department is prepared to provide in-person visits without jeopardizing the safety and wellbeing of our inmates and staff.”

As of Friday, there were 800 active Covid-19 cases in 30,000-plus inmates housed by MDOC. Testing is conducted regularly.

Nearly 26,000 inmates have tested positive for the virus over the past year and 139 have died. 

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