SEANC, State Treasurer announce plans for COVID-19 testing for DPS employees

Apr 22, 2020

Today, State Treasurer Dale Folwell and the State Health Plan announced plans to test every person who works within the walls of a prison as well as all employees at Juvenile Justice facilities and all probation/parole officers who wants to be tested for COVID-19.

Pulling this off was no easy feat, as testing throughout the nation is still scarce. SEANC members and leaders have worked tirelessly to find a solution to this problem. We found an ally in Folwell, who was able to procure more than 20,000 kits from Mako Medical in Raleigh to give our DPS staff the peace of mind they need to do their job.

SEANC is working with the State Health Plan to finalize the details of the testing process. While not mandatory, all members are encouraged to get tested.

"The outbreak at Neuse Correctional and the inmate death today at Pender Correctional puts the dangers correctional employees face in true perspective," said SEANC Executive Director Ardis Watkins. "Folwell and the State Health Plan staff were able to move mountains to make this happen. We appreciate their diligence and hope this testing will give these state employees peace of mind."

“Our personnel are on the frontlines of this crisis. This is an important step in providing DPS employees with peace of mind," said Deborah Harney, Chairwoman of the Select Committee on Prison Reform.

This announcement is a direct result of the hard work of SEANC’s Select Committee on Prison Reform as well as the SEANC staff.