New safety protocols have been implemented at San Mateo County correctional centers amid the recent surge in COVID-19 cases due to the fast-spreading omicron variant.
The protocols include canceling in-person visits except for attorney and court-ordered visits, and the requirement that staff wear N-95 or KN-95 masks while inside all correctional facilities. Staff must also be tested for COVID once per week outside of the facility, according to the San Mateo County Sheriff’s Office and San Mateo County Correctional Health Services.
In addition, all incarcerated people are required to wear their masks when outside their cell, while those going to court are required to wear an N-95 or KN-95 mask. Incarcerated people will attend video court inside their housing units except for those required to attend in person, officials said.
All in-person programs, meetings or large gatherings have been canceled until further notice, and newly arrived inmates showing signs of COVID-19 will be quarantined per CDC guidelines. All arrestees will be screened outside of the facility.
“In the event an incarcerated person shows signs of Covid-19, the Correctional Staff will collaborate with Correctional Health Services to implement a quarantine plan for that housing area as deemed necessary,” officials said.
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