Since last fall, the Omicron variant has intensified many of the challenges in the state’s prison system that already existed as a result of the pandemic.
The move is expected to shut down some housing units at the Marble Valley Regional Correctional Facility, and boost the number of correctional officers at the Southern State Correctional Facility.
On July 1, the Vermont Department of Corrections is looking to restart the visits that were suspended more than a year ago because of the Covid-19 pandemic — but only for incarcerated people who have been vaccinated.
Vermont sends prisoners to a private CoreCivic prison in Mississippi. That deal expires Oct. 1, and talks have started on whether to continue the practice.
A tip from an anonymous source has resulted in three inmates from Vermont housed at the privately run prison in Mississippi to be put in segregation.
The corrections department is negotiating to extend its current two-year contract with CoreCivic, one of the largest private prison operators in the country, to continue to house Vermont inmates out of state.
The 10 Vermont inmates, who are among 246 currently serving sentences at the Tallahatchie County Correctional Facility in Tutwiler, Mississippi, will be back on Tuesday.
The move comes as the department announced Tuesday that mass testing of inmates and staff at the Northeast Correctional Complex in St. Johnsbury resulted in no positive cases of Covid-19.