Non-Residential Services &
636 South Avenue (Bridger Bld)
Grand Junction, CO 81501
Phone: (970) 244-3346
Fax: (970) 245-5626
650 South Avenue (Powell Bld)
436 South 7th St (Chipeta Bld)
Phone: (970) 244-3300
Fax: (970) 263-7467
P.O. Box 20,000
Grand Junction, CO 81502-5001
Criminal Justice and Community Corrections Response to the COVID-19
Current Program COVID-19 Status
Current Quarantines for Exposures: None
Current Isolations for Illness: None
The continued health and safety of our staff, program clients, their families and the public is our highest priority.
Mesa County Criminal Justice and Community Corrections as well as its many programs understand there are concerns for clients, their families and the public that are caused by the COVID-19 outbreak in Colorado and our Grand Junction community. We have been in regular contact with the Mesa County Health Department and the Colorado Department of Public Safety as well as many Community Corrections agencies throughout Colorado for guidance on how our department should be handling program operations.
During the Fall of each year we update our department pandemic response plan, which encompasses a great deal of items that are critical when a pandemic occurs and helps us focus on critical programs and staff resources while balancing public safety.
Beginning in mid-March, the following temporary changes where made in the Criminal Justice and Community Corrections Program:
In mid-March the Criminal Justice Services Department (CJSD) implemented their Pandemic Response Plan that included ensuring critical supplies are available, providing education to both employees and program clients, and implementing “wipe down” cleaning crews. Our program nurse provided updated reports on client high-risk medical risks.
As additional information was distributed and COVID-19 risks increased, client visitation was discontinued and various volunteers from outside the facility were restricted from facility access. Client educational and treatment groups were limited in size and social distancing was encouraged whenever possible. Facility sick bay rooms were established for future client use. Signage was posted at campus buildings restricting access to visitors and the public. Client intakes to the program are limited on a case by case basis and they would continue to be screened for the flu or COVID-19.
Essential staff designations were distributed as the Governor announced “stay at home” guidelines. Clients with essential employment are required to work and client passes were restricted to essential business. Client emergency furlough assessments were updated for future screening. Client employers were contacted by our program job coach and they were appraised of current client restrictions and conditions. Whenever possible we want our clients to continue to work as long as the business is essential and COVID-19 practices are followed.
The Program Director attended client community meetings with all clients in the facility and addressed the new restrictions, social distancing guidelines, and program changes. Outpatient treatment programs have been postponed as well as client intakes. The Management staff began to review client emergency furlough assessments first for high risk medical needs clients for potential furlough from the program. By providing program furloughs we allow for additional social distancing, less crowded conditions and make available bedrooms for sick bay, quarantine or isolation reasons.
The program now provides a daytime recreation center for clients to attend in small groups each day. Additional client phone access allows for family calls. Free phone cards are distributed so that clients and families can stay in touch. The Program Director received approval to waive at least one month of client room and board costs. Assistance was provided to unemployed clients in filing unemployment claims.
By late March some client furloughs for release have been approved. Client passes into the community are discontinued except for essential employment, critical personal items or medical appointments. Additional education on social distancing is provided to clients and employees. Counseling staff are making themselves available to clients as needed.
By early April one client is diagnosed with symptoms similar to the CODIV-19 and is provided an isolated room. Those that may have been exposed to him are temporarily quarantined. Mesa County Health Department is updated and additional personal protection equipment (PPE) is provided to both employees and clients accessing a quarantined area.
Additional information will be updated to our website periodically as conditions evolve. Operating and living in a residential facility during such a crisis is challenging to employees, clients and their families. We continue to make updates to our practices with guidance from the Mesa County Health Department and the Colorado State Department of Public Safety, in order to balance health concerns and community safety. We appreciate everyone’s cooperation during this time.