Juvenile Justice Commission

Covid-19 Updates

Covid-19 Updates

Information Updated on 11/23/20

Confirmed COVID Cases at the JJC*

  Residents Staff
Residential Community Homes 19 26
The New Jersey Training School 29 31
The Johnstone Campus (Juvenile Medium Security Facility & The Female Secure Care and Intake Facility) 0 31
Other Staff who may have contact with youth 7
Total 48 95
  * This includes all cases among JJC residents and all JJC staff who work in residential and secure care facilities or who otherwise may have contact with youth.  
  • Between 4/19/20 and 6/8/20, 246 JJC residents tested negative for COVID-19.
  • Between 6/9/20 and 8/3/20, 247 JJC residents tested negative for COVID-19.
  • Between 6/9/20 and 8/3/20, 717 staff tested negative for COVID-19.
  • Between 8/4/20 and 9/20/20, 250 JJC residents tested negative for COVID-19.
  • Between 8/4/20 and 9/20/20, 754 staff tested negative for COVID-19.
  • Between 9/21/20 and 10/22/20, 250 JJC residents tested negative for COVID-19.
  • Between 9/21/20 and 10/22/20, 823 staff tested negative for COVID-19.
  • Since 10/23/20, 175 JJC residents have tested negative for COVID-19 (testing ongoing).
  • Since 10/23/20, 635 JJC staff have tested negative for COVID-19 (testing ongoing).

The Juvenile Justice Commission (JJC) takes the threat of coronavirus (COVID-19) seriously, and, in consultation with the Department of Health, has taken proactive measures to mitigate the spread of the virus including:

  • Testing all residents for COVID-19;
  • Testing all staff who work in secure or residential facilities or who otherwise may have contact with JJC residents for COVID-19;
  • Prohibiting the intake of youth presenting with symptoms consistent with COVID-19, testing all new intakes for COVID-19, and holding new intakes in the Juvenile Reception Unit for 14 days prior to transfer to the general population;
  • Conducting workplace contact tracing and mandating that staff having contact with an employee or resident who has tested positive for COVID-19 self-quarantine at home for 14 days;
  • Preparing medical isolation areas for use in the event a resident tests positive for COVID-19 or exhibits symptoms consistent with COVID-19 and requiring staff to wear appropriate personal protective equipment when interacting with any resident in medical isolation;
  • Implementing work-from-home programs for non-essential staff;
  • Collaborating with the State Parole Board to conduct hearings via telephone and/or video conferencing;
  • Working with the Office of the Public Defender and Rutgers Law School’s Criminal & Youth Justice Clinic to modify dispositions so that youth scheduled for release in the near future can be released early when appropriate;
  • Temperature screening all staff entering JJC secure facilities and Residential Community Homes;
  • Temperature screening youth on a daily basis;
  • Communicating regularly with youth about preventative hygiene practices and what to do if they experience symptoms through written materials and routine conversation;
  • In any facility where someone has tested positive for COVID-19, using “cohort quarantining,” whereby residents remain in their assigned housing units except for outdoor recreation for 14 days, to minimize any potential spread of the disease;
  • Following any 14-day period of cohort-quarantining, moving to “modified cohort quarantining,” whereby residents have greater freedom of movement, but still do not interact with residents from another housing unit (i.e., residents might utilize the gym, programming space, or the dining room, but they do so only with their cohort);
  • Temporarily replacing on-site delivery of educational and social services with remote service delivery;
  • Implementing enhanced sanitization protocols, including contracting with two professional environmental firms to conduct enhanced cleaning at all facilities where an individual tested positive for COVID-19, and contracting with a third vendor to conduct weekly deep cleaning that supplements daily cleaning completed by the JJC’s own staff;
  • Mandating all individuals entering facilities wear face masks;
  • Making face masks available to all residents;
  • Making additional personal protective equipment available to staff at facilities impacted by COVID-19;
  • Temporarily suspending work release programs for residents;
  • Cancelling all non-essential court, medical, and other transports;
  • Suspending all staff trainings and group meetings; and
  • Implementing enhanced social distancing practices for youth and staff including moving furniture to ensure these practices are followed.
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