Texas correctional facilities resuming in-person visits

The Texas Department of Criminal Justice announced Tuesday it will resume in-person visitation at all units statewide starting Monday, March 15.

Visitors may register for face-to-face visitation times starting Wednesday, March 10, at 8 a.m. by calling the unit of the inmate they wish to visit.

The department will move from a call-in scheduling system to an online visit booking system. The TDCJ also announced some changes to visitations.

Eligible inmates will be allowed two in-person visits per month and, to allow for social distancing, visits will consist of one visitor for one hour.

Video visits will not count against the number of in-person visits each month.

Additionally, visitors will be required to complete a 15-minute rapid COVID-19 test before entering the facility. After a negative test result, visitors must wear a face covering while checking in. If visitors do not have a mask, one will be provided. The department will require staff assigned to visitation areas to wear masks and gloves.

In-person visits have been suspended since March, 2020, after a disaster declaration issued by Gov. Abbott. The agency has seen a significant decrease in COVID19 cases among inmates and believes it is prepared to allow limited visitations.