Utah Department of Corrections

10/12/2020:

On Thursday and Friday, the Utah State Health Department aided UDC in the mass testing of Wasatch A-Block and B-Block. There are currently 327 incarcerated individuals housed in those two blocks.

There are now 264 active cases of COVID-19 at the Utah State Prison in Draper. All confirmed cases have been in the Wasatch Facility A-Block and B-Block, or through our intake process. Thus far, the vast majority of incarcerated individuals who have tested positive are either asymptomatic or exhibiting minor symptoms.

The Department provides on-site medical care through the Clinical Services Bureau, which operates infirmaries at both the Utah State Prison and the Central Utah Correctional Facility. The infirmaries offer comprehensive, on-site medical care where medical staff can treat or stabilize inmates needing health care. Mental health services are also available to incarcerated individuals as needed.

The Bureau also contracts with outside hospitals and clinics for treatment of seriously ill inmates who cannot be properly cared for at an infirmary or require evaluation or care from a specialist.

Our medical team continues to closely monitor the situation, and is conducting frequent medical and mental health checks on those that are in designated quarantine and isolation areas.

Any incarcerated individual who exhibits symptoms outside the resources of our medical providers will receive care at a nearby hospital.

We are still working to provide commissary services, but deliveries will likely see delays.

Before September 23, USP and CUCF had not had a confirmed case of COVID-19 within the general incarcerated population. All past confirmed cases have been through new prison intakes who have been promptly tested upon arrival and quarantined for 14 days; or among incarcerated individuals in county jails that UDC contracts with to house a portion of the state’s incarcerated population.

If you would like to learn more about quarantine and isolation procedures, we would encourage you to review this document: https://corrections.utah.gov/images/Inmate_handout_full_0407_1.pdf

To learn more about the CDC recommendations that the UDC is currently following and exceeding (along with following local health officials recommendations) please visit: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/correction-detention/guidance-correctional-detention.html

We’ve also tried to provide more specific information regarding the Wasatch outbreak on this FAQ page here: https://corrections.utah.gov/images/Wasatch_Outbreak_FAQs_1005_fn.pdf

If you have additional questions, please contact the Department’s communications director, Kaitlin Felsted at 801-560-7608 or kefelsted@utah.gov

We will continue to provide regular updates on this webpage.

October 5, 2020

At this time, visiting (along with volunteer and religious services) will continue to remain on hold through November 1, at which time we will again reevaluate. We will continue to offer 10 free 15 minute phone calls per week.

10/01/2020:

There are now  57 active cases of COVID-19 at the Utah State Prison in Draper. This represents approximately one percent of our incarcerated population.  At this time, inmates are either asymptomatic or exhibiting minor symptoms. Confirmed cases have now spread outside of our Wasatch facility Baker-Block with three inmates who rapid-tested positive for COVID-19 last night in A-Block of our Wasatch facility, after exhibiting symptoms.

Our medical team continues to closely monitor the situation, and are conducting frequent medical and mental health checks on those that are in designated quarantine and isolation areas.

The Utah State Health Department aided UDC medical staff in the testing of 125 incarcerated individuals housed within the Wasatch Facility today, and more tests are anticipated to be administered in the coming days.  

There are 550 inmates housed within the Wasatch Facility. The facility comprises four blocks: A-Block, B-Block (Baker), C-Block (Charlie), D-Block (Dog).  

We will continue to provide regular updates on this webpage.

If you would like to learn more about quarantine and isolation procedures, we would encourage you to review this document: https://corrections.utah.gov/images/Inmate_handout_full_0407_1.pdf

To learn more about the CDC recommendations that the UDC is currently following and exceeding (along with following local health officials recommendations) please visit: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/correction-detention/guidance-correctional-detention.html

09/30/2020:

At this time, visiting (along with volunteer and religious services) will continue to remain on hold through October 15, at which time we will again reevaluate. We will continue to offer 10 free 15 minute phone calls per week.

09/28/2020:

On September 28, there were 47 active cases of COVID-19 within the Utah State Prison in Draper. 45 of those cases have been confirmed in the Wasatch Facility in Baker Block, and the other two cases are new prison intakes. 

On September 25, the Utah State Health Department aided UDC medical staff in the testing of 164 incarcerated individuals housed within Baker Block.

At this time it is suspected that a couple of the COVID-positive inmates may have contracted the virus from a medical care provider who treated several inmates—while wearing full personal protective equipment (PPE)—and shortly after became symptomatic. At that time the provider did promptly get tested and quarantined.

Read full update below. 

All inmates who were treated by the medical care provider, along with all those housed in Baker Block, have been isolated and tested. Thorough contact tracing and testing has been initiated since the first confirmed case on September 23, and both USP and the Central Utah Correctional Facility (CUCF) are now on a modified lockdown. Incarcerated individuals’ movement and level of recreation will be limited, and based on areas of observation, quarantine and isolation.

UDC is following the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommendations, and coordinating closely with state and local health officials to ensure that all containment steps are taken, which include, coordinating with local health officials on quarantine and isolation, conducting contact tracing, and ensuring that proper cleaning protocols are implemented.

“Our team and those we supervise have worked diligently and heroically to keep COVID-19 from entering our general incarcerated population,” said Mike Haddon, executive director for the Utah Department of Corrections. “We are genuinely concerned about the possible transmission of this virus, which is why we are following and exceeding CDC recommendations and working with local health officials to contain any potential outbreak.”

Until September 23, USP and CUCF did not have a confirmed case of COVID-19 within the general incarcerated population. All past confirmed cases have been through new prison intakes who have been promptly tested upon arrival and quarantined for 14 days; or among incarcerated individuals in county jails that UDC contracts with to house a portion of the state’s incarcerated population.

The Department provides on-site medical care through the Clinical Services Bureau, which operates infirmaries at both the Utah State Prison and the Central Utah Correctional Facility. The infirmaries offer comprehensive, on-site medical care where medical staff can treat or stabilize inmates needing health care. Mental health services are also available to inmates as needed.

The Bureau also contracts with outside hospitals and clinics for treatment of seriously ill inmates who cannot be properly cared for at an infirmary or require evaluation or care from a specialist.

In regards to COVID-19 treatment, if an inmate needs greater care such as access to a ventilator, they will be cared for in a hospital.

UDC is driven to ensure that staff, inmates, and the general public are kept informed of recent developments within our operations during the COVID-19 pandemic. Over the last couple months, the Department has proactively taken stringent steps for prevention, and toward containment.

Regular updates will be posted on this webpage.

09/25/2020:

Five inmates have now rapid tested positive for COVID-19 within the Utah State Prison in the Wasatch Facility in Baker Block. All five inmates have also been administered the Reverse Transcription Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR) test and results are due back from an outside medical provider within the next day or two.

Earlier today, the Utah State Health Department aided UDC medical staff in the testing of 164 incarcerated individuals housed within Baker Block, and results are anticipated within the next 72 hours.

At this time it is suspected that the COVID-positive inmates may have contracted the virus from a medical care provider who treated several inmates—while wearing full personal protective equipment (PPE)—and shortly after became symptomatic. At that time the provider did promptly get tested and quarantined.

All inmates who were treated by the medical care provider, along with those that have tested positive in Baker Block, have been isolated and tested. Thorough contact tracing and testing has been initiated since the first confirmed case on September 23, and both USP and the Central Utah Correctional Facility (CUCF) are now on a modified lockdown. Incarcerated individuals’ movement and level of recreation will be limited, and based on areas of observation, quarantine and isolation.

UDC is following the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommendations, and coordinating closely with state and local health officials to ensure that all containment steps are taken, which include, coordinating with local health officials on quarantine and isolation, conducting contact tracing, and ensuring that proper cleaning protocols are implemented.

“Our team and those we supervise have worked diligently and heroically to keep COVID-19 from entering our general incarcerated population,” said Mike Haddon, executive director for the Utah Department of Corrections. “We are genuinely concerned about the possible transmission of this virus, which is why we are following and exceeding CDC recommendations and working with local health officials to contain any potential outbreak.”

Until now, USP and CUCF have not had a confirmed case of COVID-19 within the general incarcerated population. All past confirmed cases have been through new prison intakes who have been promptly tested upon arrival and quarantined for 14 days; or among incarcerated individuals in county jails that UDC contracts with to house a portions of the state’s incarcerated population. 

The Department provides on-site medical care through the Clinical Services Bureau, which operates infirmaries at both the Utah State Prison and the Central Utah Correctional Facility. The infirmaries offer comprehensive, on-site medical care where medical staff can treat or stabilize inmates needing health care. Mental health services are also available to inmates as needed.

The Bureau also contracts with outside hospitals and clinics for treatment of seriously ill inmates who cannot be properly cared for at an infirmary or require evaluation or care from a specialist.

In regards to COVID-19 treatment, if an inmate needs greater care such as access to a ventilator, they will be cared for in a hospital.

UDC is driven to ensure that staff, inmates, and the general public are kept informed of recent developments within our operations during the COVID-19 pandemic. Over the last couple months, the Department has proactively taken stringent steps for prevention, and toward containment. 

Regular updates will be posted on this webpage.

09/23/2020:

The Utah State Prison (USP) in Draper and the Central Utah Correctional Facility are on a 24-hour lockdown starting at approximately 3:00 p.m. due to a possible transmission of COVID-19 within the general population.

UDC is working in accordance with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommendations, and coordinating closely with state and local health officials to ensure that all containment steps are taken, which include, coordinating with local health officials on quarantine and isolation procedures, conducting contact tracing, and ensuring that proper cleaning protocols are implemented.

We will provide further information shortly on this webpage.

09/15/2020:

At this time, visiting (along with volunteer and religious services) will continue to remain on hold through October 1, at which time we will again reevaluate. We will continue to offer 10 free 15 minute phone calls per week.

09/10/2020:

As we work to initiate video visitation, and continue planning for a return to normalcy, Utah Correctional Industries will be taking photos of incarcerated individuals, beginning mid-September, to be shared with their families. 

At this time, incarcerated individuals in most maximum security areas, at the Utah State Prison in Draper and the Central Utah Correctional Facility, will not be included due to logistical problems and privilege levels.

We anticipate that photos will be completed by the end of October. We hope that this will be an opportunity we can continue providing in the future, and may open it up to excluded areas in the future as an incentive. 

09/01/2020:

At this time, visiting (along with volunteer and religious services) will continue to remain on hold through September 15, at which time we will again reevaluate. 

We will continue to offer 10 free 15 minute phone calls per week, and we will continue to explore ways to increase communication and bolster morale while maintaining a safe and healthy environment for incarcerated individuals.

The Utah Department of Corrections anticipates that video visiting will begin in designated facilities in the next few weeks. Certain areas will take longer as they still require more enhancement. 

We anticipate that each incarcerated individual will be given two 30-minute video visits per month, if their privilege level allows. 

In regards to the visiting renewal process, we would encourage families and friends to continue submitting those forms by mail. We anticipate that there will be some grace period in effect for a designated amount of time to accommodate renewal requests to make it through the system. 

A committee has been working closely on the visiting process, which includes scheduling and visitor authorization.

More details will be made available in the coming weeks, and we thank you for your continued patience as we introduce this new form of communication into our facilities. 

Here's a link where you can find visiting forms: https://corrections.utah.gov/index.php/family-friends/how-to/14-visiting-information/1058-visitor-application-forms

At this time, visiting (along with volunteer and religious services) will continue to remain on hold through September 1, at which time we will again reevaluate. 

We will continue to offer 10 free 15 minute phone calls per week, and we will continue to explore ways to increase communication and bolster morale while maintaining a safe and healthy environment for incarcerated individuals.

07/24/2020:

06/01/2020:

We want you to know that we are actively exploring options for video visiting, while we continue to suspend visiting at the Utah State Prison and the Central Utah Correctional Facility.

Based on the Governor’s Color-Coded Health Guidance System, our facilities continue to operate at a high-risk level, as incarcerated individuals exist in a very community-based environment.

While we are moving as quickly as we can, there are roadblocks along the way including a lack of WiFi access points or poor cellular signal within prison housing.

We have technicians identifying locations for access via cellular service, and we are hoping to implement something in the near future.

Our intent is to set up something more permanent within our correctional facility in Gunnison, so we can offer this supplementary form of communication to incarcerated individuals for years to come.

Our correctional facility in Draper is more complicated, as we consider it's varied infrastructure and the funds needed to invest in such an engineered process, especially as we will be moving to the new facility in Salt Lake City in the next two years, and which will be equipped with video visiting.

It's also important to note that while we are working to add this additional communication channel, we will not be eliminating in-person visiting at any of our facilities--present and future. 

For now, we will continue to offer 10 free 15 minute phone calls per week, and we will press forward in exploring ways to increase communication, bolster morale, while maintaining a safe and healthy environment for incarcerated individuals.

We truly recognize how critical family and friends are to those incarcerated, and we feel your frustrations and anxiety as we continue to adapt to this novel coronavirus.

We encourage you to continue communicating with your loved one through the current channels available. A handwritten note, or supportive phone call can make a world of difference in their lives.

Thank you for your continued patience as we work to adapt to these difficult times.

At this time, visiting will remain on hold through July 1 at which time we will again reevaluate. 

05/29/2020: The Utah Department of Corrections (UDC) has confirmed its first positive case of COVID-19 at the Utah State Prison in Draper on May 29, 2020.

UDC will not be releasing the name of the offender or their housing location.

The inmate is male and between the ages of 18-24, and is in stable condition and has been isolated.

The offender came into the facility as an intake from a county jail on May 27 and was tested and confirmed within 48 hours of arrival, while housing with only a small group of others who came into the facility at the same time.

Starting May 20, the UDC moved to once a week intake day for those transitioning to prison from a county jail or from Adult Probation and Parole. In direct consultation with local health officials, UDC has worked to test all intakes shortly after their arrival, along with housing intakes together for a period of two weeks before moving them to general population.  

UDC is working in accordance with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommendations, and coordinating closely with state and local health officials to ensure that all containment steps are taken, which include but are not limited to isolating the infected inmate who will receive frequent health checks; coordinating with local health officials on quarantine procedures and contact tracing; and ensuring that proper cleaning protocols are implemented.

You can learn more here: https://corrections.utah.gov/images/052920_Confirmed_Case_at_Utah_State_Prison_in_Draper.pdf

05/15/2020: This, Governor Gary R. Herbert, upon the recommendation of the Utah COVID-19 Community Task Force, announced that the Color-Coded Health Guidance System would move from a moderate risk level to low risk level for most of the state.

While the State of Utah will begin to open up a little more over the next couple months, these guidelines will not directly correlate with how we will operate within our correctional facilities. In a congregate and confined environment like prison or community correctional centers, it’s difficult to maintain social distancing, and it’s also more difficult to isolate and contain the potential spread of COVID-19.

At this time we will not be rolling back many of the changes that we’ve implemented in the last couple months; however, we are exploring innovative approaches on how we can again offer opportunities for programming, visiting, and volunteer and religious services. This approach is consistent with guidance from State public health officials and practice in Correctional operations across the nation. We ask for your continued patience at this time, and please know that your incarcerated loved ones safety and health continue to be our top priority. 

You can read the full newsletter provided this week to incarcerated individuals here: https://corrections.utah.gov/images/Newsletter_to_Inmates__COVID-19__May_5.pdf

05/11/2020: Visiting will remain on hold through June 1 at which time we will again reevaluate. 

04/23/2020: Due to the evolving situation with COVID-19, visiting will remain on hold through May 15 at which time we will again reevaluate.

04/14/2020: Since the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released new recommendations regarding wearing masks in community-based environments, our Utah Correctional Industries staff and incarcerated individuals who participate in the program, have worked dedicatedly to sew washable, reusable face coverings. Every incarcerated individual within the Utah State Prison in Draper and the Central Utah Correctional Facility in Gunnison and every staff member have been provided two of these face coverings along with information on how to sanitize their face covering, and when to wear them.  

04/09/2020: The Utah Department of Corrections (UDC) is making referrals to the Utah Board of Pardons and Parole (BOPP) regarding the early release of some offenders. Originally referrals were being made for those who have a release date within 90 days, but in light of the ongoing spread of COVID-19 throughout the country, this timeline was recently reevaluated and increased to 180 days. All offenders released early must still have an approved address to release to.

To learn more visit: https://corrections.utah.gov/index.php/home/alerts-2/1239-utah-identifies-early-releases-to-create-additional-capacity-within-correctional-facilities

04/03/2020:

The Utah Department of Corrections (UDC) has confirmed its first positive case of COVID-19 within one of its community correctional centers on April 3, 2020.

The offender, who has not been in a state prison since late 2019, is male and between the ages of 45 to 64, and is in stable condition and has been isolated.

UDC is working in accordance with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and state and local health departments to ensure that all containment steps are taken, which include but are not limited to isolating the infected offender who will receive frequent health checks; coordinating with public health officials on quarantine procedures and contact tracing; and ensuring that proper cleaning and contact protocols are implemented.

Read more here:https://corrections.utah.gov/images/040320_UDC_Confirmed_COVID-19_Case_.pdf

03/31/2020: 

The process for picking up inmate property will temporarily change during the COVID-19 pandemic. You can learn more here: https://corrections.utah.gov/images/COVID-19_Property_Pick-up.pdf

03/26/2020:

Due to the evolving situation with COVID-19, visiting will remain on hold through April 26 at which time we will reevaluate. In the meantime, we will continue to offer 10 free 15-minute phone calls per week to each inmate. 

Public Information Panels and volunteer activities continue to be postponed until further notice.

03/26/2020:

In collaboration with the Utah Board of Pardons and Parole, and support from the Utah Governor’s Office, the Utah Department of Corrections is initiating some early releases to create capacity within correctional facilities as confirmed cases of COVID-19 increase throughout the state.

At this time there are no confirmed cases within the UDC facilities among either staff or inmates.

The Utah Department of Corrections (UDC) is making referrals to the Utah Board of Pardons and Parole (BOPP) for release of incarcerated individuals, who are already within 180 days of their scheduled release date and have an approved address.

Learn more here: https://corrections.utah.gov/index.php/home/alerts-2/1239-utah-identifies-early-releases-to-create-additional-capacity-within-correctional-facilities

03/24/2020: The April 6 Focus Forum meeting has been cancelled, and will be rescheduled for a later date. 

03/20/2020: Starting March 31, the weekly Release Day Fair and Orientation event will temporarily change its operations. Please visit the Release Day Information page for more information. 

03/18/2020: All inmates at the Utah State Prison are safe and accounted for after an earthquake this morning.

03/13/2020: Increased Access to Phones

Effective Monday, March 16, 2020, inmates at the Utah State Prison and the Central Utah Correctional Facility will have access to 10 free phone calls per week. The free calls will be limited to 15 minutes. Traditional fees will be charged for additional calls and calls exceeding the 15-minute limit. The free communications are being put in place to allow offenders to stay in contact with loved ones while visiting is suspended at the two facilities. We'd like to thank CenturyLink for working so quickly in coordination with our Department to get this in motion!

03/12/2020: Visiting and Volunteering Suspended:

Based on the most recent recommendations from the CDC and the Utah Coronavirus Task Force to take preventative steps to inhibit the spread of the Coronavirus (COVID-19), we are temporarily suspending all visiting and volunteering to our correctional facilities. These include Utah State Prison in Draper and the Central Utah Correctional Facility in Gunnison. Our Department will reevaluate this suspension in two weeks. We will provide an update through our website and social media at that time. Volunteers, family and friends play a critical role in an offender's rehabilitation process, and we will continue to keep you updated over the next few weeks on when those opportunities will be available again. Incarcerated individuals have been notified that visiting is suspended and we are encouraging them to continue utilizing the phone calls and mail.

Attorneys will be permitted to meet with offenders, but only through barrier visits at this time. 

03/12/2020: Tours and public awareness panels suspended for the time being.

03/12/2020: The Utah Serving Time Cafe is closed for business until further notice.