Virginia DOC manufactures masks for staff and offenders

Published 3:17 pm Thursday, March 26, 2020

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The Virginia Department of Corrections is now manufacturing sneeze/cough guard masks for use by Virginia DOC staff and offenders. These are not medical grade masks, but they will aid in the effort to keep COVID-19 out of the state’s correctional facilities.

There are still no known cases of COVID-19 among offenders and staff in Virginia’s prisons.

The Virginia DOC started production of sneeze/cough guard masks late Friday at all four Virginia Correctional Enterprise (VCE) apparel plants. On Sunday, 5,200 sneeze/cough guards were delivered to Coffeewood Correctional Center and 4,900 to Dillwyn Correctional Center. Eighty are being delivered to probation and parole officers today.

Deerfield Correctional Center will receive the next round of masks. Virginia DOC is hoping to be able to produce up to 15,000 sneeze/cough guard masks a day.

Virginia Correctional Enterprises also manufactures cleaning supplies approved by the EPA for use in combating the coronavirus. These are used by the Virginia DOC and available for procurement.

Due to high demand, order amounts are limited per customer.

VCE is a self-supporting division established by the General Assembly more than 75 years ago to provide job training and certification opportunities to offenders in Virginia’s correctional system. Examples of VCE products and services range from ergonomic office chairs to the linens at a major Virginia teaching hospital, which are washed, cleaned and delivered by VCE. You can see examples of VCE’s work at most major universities, state parks and state buildings.