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Visitation is scheduled to resume at all Tennessee prisons beginning this weekend, including at Hartsville’s Trousdale Turner Correctional Center.

The Tennessee Department of Correction made the announcement on April 2 that modified visitation schedules will resume at prisons beginning Saturday, April 10. TDOC suspended visitation in March 2020 because of rising numbers of COVID-19 cases. The decision to resume visitation was based on community data from the Department of Health, as well as vaccine administration at each facility.

“The health and safety of the individuals entrusted to our care, staff and visitors to our facilities is a top priority for CoreCivic. This commitment is shared by our partners at the Tennessee Department of Correction (TDOC), and we have worked closely together with TDOC and state health officials to respond to this unprecedented situation appropriately, thoroughly and with care for the well-being of those entrusted to us and our communities. TDOC is reinstating visitation at all facilities, and we will follow their guidelines,” said Amanda Gilchrist, Public Affairs Director for CoreCivic.

“We believe in-person visitation is a critical part of the reentry process for those in our care, and we have worked hard to offer alternative lines of communication with family members throughout the pandemic.”

In order to maintain social distancing guidelines, all visitors will be required to schedule an appointment. Visitors will be required to wear masks, have their temperatures checked and respond to a series of COVID-19 screening questions prior to entry. All inmates will be required to wear masks during the visits and have their temperatures checked prior to entering the visitation gallery. Hand sanitizing stations will be available throughout the area.

“The Tennessee Department of Correction is committed to protecting the safety and well-being of our staff, inmates, visitors and volunteers,” TDOC Commissioner Tony Parker said in a press statement. “We understand the importance of maintaining contact with family members and we have worked to ensure the lines of communication between inmates and their loved ones remained opened during the pandemic.”

Reach Chris Gregory at 615-450-5756 or cgregory@hartsvillevidette.com. Contributing: Staff reports

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