New Visitation Policies in Multnomah County Detention Center Due to COVID-19 Coronavirus
Because of concerns for the safety and wellness of both staff and inmates at the Multnomah County Detention Center in Portland, Oregon, contact visits of any type will be suspended until further notice.
Approved Non-contact visits with family, friends and the inmate’s lawyers may still be allowed when at-home or onsite video visitation is not available, however given that new guidelines are changing daily please check the visitation page or call 503-988-3689 for updates.
Video Visitation at Multnomah County Detention Center
At-home and onsite video visitation guidelines for Multnomah County Detention Center, when this service is available, can be found by going to the visitation information page.
We highly recommend that you call 503-988-3689 first for any changes due to staff shortages or other unforeseen circumstances, including whether your inmate has become ill and is unable to be in the general population where video kiosks are available.
How Long Will These Changes Last?
Experts in the study of the COVID-19 Coronavirus are anticipating that spread of the virus will be a ongoing concern for Multnomah County, the state of Oregon and the entire United States until the end of 2020 and maybe even beyond.
There is some hope that the warmer summer months will slow the spread of this virus, however given that a vaccine will not be readily available for at least a year or longer, the virus could be with us for some time, at least well into 2021.
Will the Inmates in Multnomah County Detention Center Be Safe from Getting Sick With COVID-19 Coronavirus?
Whether the inmates are safe from contracting the coronavirus depends entirely on two things:
The bottom line is that most people who have become infected do not show any signs of illness for many days or weeks, but during that time, they can still infect others.
Most people who get the coronavirus show very few symptoms beyond what you might experience with a cold or a mild case of the common cold. Approximately 10-15% become very ill with symptoms like pneumonia and may require critical care from a hospital.
Studies that have been done in the past two months show that the hardest hit are those 60 years of age and older, while young men and women rarely become very ill, and when they do, recover quickly.
Multnomah County Detention Center is encouraging inmates to practice ‘social distancing’, which means staying as far apart as possible. In addition, our staff is advising inmates to avoid shaking hands, washing their hands often, not touching their face, nose, mouth or eyes, and refraining from touching ‘common areas’ throughout the facility.
Given the close proximity of inmates and staff to each other in this lockup, it is going to be very difficult to prevent the spread of coronavirus once it is introduced into the facility as the virus can spread vis the microscopic vapor that we release every time we speak, cough or sneeze.
The staff Multnomah County Detention Center will do everything we can to stop the spread within our facility, however we have to be honest, we are all entering uncharted territory under what is already normally a very difficult and stressful situation for the inmates and their families.
We will continuously update this page as the spread of this virus accelerates and changes to our policies occur.