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DoC, Roanoke City Jails prepare to reopen to visitors

Published: Jul. 8, 2021 at 5:28 PM EDT
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ROANOKE, Va. (WDBJ) - The Virginia Department of Corrections (DoC) announced plans to re-open its facilities to visitors Thursday.

The DoC plans to allow entry to attorneys and officials starting July 15.

Volunteers and religious groups will be allowed August 1 and family visits will begin September 1 for some facilities.

The Roanoke City Jail has a similar timetable.

Starting next week, inmates will be allowed to resume recreational activities.

Volunteers will be allowed to enter the jail the following week, and family visits will resume in September or October.

“It creates a lot of stress relief, because they are able to see their loved ones up close and personal, they’re able to return to a routine, per se, they’re able to come out of the housing area, go into these classrooms and things like that, and it creates a little bit of a distraction for them,” said Roanoke Sheriff David Bell.

The Roanoke City Jail is also working with VDH to host weekly COVID vaccination clinics. Currently, 35% of inmates are fully vaccinated.

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