DPS Actions on COVID-19

Military service member giving a vaccine to a citizenIn early 2020, Gov. Roy Cooper tasked the N.C. Department of Public Safety's Emergency Management division to co-chair the state's Novel Coronavirus Task Force in partnership with the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services. Coordinating with stakeholders and federal, state and local agencies, the task force prepared for COVID-19 infections in North Carolina and led the state's response to the virus. DPS and its divisions of Emergency Management, NC National Guard, Adult Correction and Juvenile Justice, State Highway Patrol, and others have played key roles in supporting North Carolina's response to the global pandemic.

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With the advent of COVID-19 infections in North Carolina, NC Emergency Management provides daily logistical support to NCDHHS, the incident's technical lead agency, by coordinating communications with local entities and the state's existing emergency management network of partners. In support of the Public Health Coordinating Center (PHCC) and the Public Health Incident Management Team, NCEM provides Incident Action Plan development and daily situation reporting; logistical support for supplies; and coordinated, unified communication (through social media, to the public and stakeholders through its participation and daily support of the State Emergency Response Team's Joint Information Center. 


Jan. 14, 2021 - Divisions II and III each issued 12 sanitizer dispensers and 29 bags of sanitize

Jan. 8, 2021 - Division I issued 12 sanitizer dispensers and 29 bags of sanitizer.

Sept. 17, 2020 - Community Corrections received 5,000 reusable cloth masks from Correction Enterprise. Each Division was supplied with 1,200 masks. The remaining 200 were distributed to administrative programs Community Corrections staff.

Sept. 3, 2020 - Each of the four Community Corrections Divisions received a shipment of 3,000 KN-95 masks

July 23, 2020 - Divisions I, II and III picked up 30 cases each of the Purell hand sanitizer

July 16, 2020 – 1,650 non-surgical masks and 500 face shields picked up for Division III and IV

July 15, 2020 – 1,650 non-surgical masks and 500 face shields picked up for Division I

July 14, 2020 – 1,650 non-surgical masks and 600 face shields picked up for Division II

June 10, 2020 - Extended current temporary pandemic emergency pay to staff who work in community supervision positions. Based on current salaries, employees receive a 5 percent pay increase through June 2020. Administrative support positions in Community Corrections field offices are now eligible for the increase and will receive it retroactive to April 1, 2020.

July 6, 2020 - Received 7,200 face masks from SOIU

June 1, 2020 - 5,000 additional masks were distributed to each Division.

June 1, 2020 - 10,525 KN95 masks and 100 surgical masks have been sent to each division and DCC Admin and associated sections have received 1,500 masks.

June 1, 2020 - Division I picked up the following PPE: 5,000 KN95 masks, 25 thermometers,11,500 instant hand sanitizers and 252 4-ounce bottles of gel hand sanitizer

May 27, 2020 – 10,000 KN95 masks, 50 digital thermometers and 2 boxes of sanitizing wipes were distributed to Divisions III IV

April 14, 2020 - KN95 masks distributed today – 535 to each division, 135 DCC Admin., and 100 to DART.

March 16, 2020 - The Division of Community Corrections of the North Carolina Department of Public Safety is committed to reducing the risks of COVID-19 to Probation and Parole Officers and all Community Corrections staff as well as those under community supervision and post-release. Actions taken during this time are designed to ensure public safety while protecting the health and wellbeing of our staff, those under supervision and members of the public we may encounter in the carrying out our vital mission. Community Supervision will continue uninterrupted, however, modifications will be made to accomplish this task while reducing the COVID-19 risks to all those involved.

The health and safety of employees and the juveniles in our care, as well as the offenders, in facilities and under community supervision, are top priorities of the Department of Public Safety.

To protect its employees and those within its care, the Division of Adult Correction and Juvenile Justice (ACJJ) management encourages employees who may have been exposed to the coronavirus to be tested for COVID-19. Positive test numbers reported here reflect cumulative results since early March. 

In mid-May 2020, NCDPS announced an initiative to make COVID-19 testing available to employees in ACJJ. The partnership with the State Health Plan, FastMed and LabCorp provided a direct testing solution for the more than 21,000 employees who work across the state in more than 350 work sites, facilities, offices and communities in each of the state’s 100 counties.

The numbers reported below include both self-reported COVID-19 test results and information received from the FastMed/LabCorp testing initiative. These numbers may not include all staff members who have been tested in consultation with their primary care physicians. NCDPS has no way of confirming the results of those privately administered tests unless notified by staff.

Note: Information on this page is updated weekly. Last updated March 11, 2022. 

ACJJ Employees COVID-19 Positive Cases

Statewide Totals
Presumed Recovered & Returned to Work
Prisons 8,629 8,555
Community Corrections 1,274 1,271
Juvenile Justice Facilities 284 282
Juvenile Justice Court Services 298 298
Juvenile Justice Administration 6 6
Office of Staff Development & Training 50 50
Special Operations & Intelligence Unit 28 28
ACJJ Administration 3 3
Combined Records 14 12
Reentry Programs & Services 6 6
Inmate Grievance Resolution Board 6 6
S.H.I.E.L.D. 0 0

Effective March 16, 2020
To prevent the spread of COVID-19, the Department of Public Safety immediately suspended all training academies, planned or currently ongoing, for its adult correctional, juvenile justice and law enforcement employees, for an initial period of two weeks.

“While training is a critical need within DPS, we are operating in an extraordinary time, requiring difficult decisions,” said Secretary Erik A. Hooks.  “We must prioritize the health and safety of our employees, and ultimately the public health, during this pandemic. ”

Samarcand Training Academy

March 16, 2020 - Suspended all training until at least March 29. Staff disinfectied and sanitized all rooms on campus, and social distancing measures are being practiced by administrative, housekeeping, maintenance and security staff.

June 1, 2020 - resumed in-person, congregate training operations using strict CDC and NCDHHS protocols. All staff, students, instructors and visitors must have daily temperature checks prior to entering the campus. All students and instructors training at the Academy are given the COVID-19 Guidelines for Students handout during check-in. Daily spot checks are completed by Academy staff to ensure COVID-19 protocols and guidelines are followed. 

Class size reduced to implement social distancing with limits of 12 in regular classrooms and 16-20 in larger classrooms. Face masks are mandatory inside and must be worn outside if unable to maintain 6-foot distance from others. Fitness equipment is inaccessible and dormitory recreational lounges are closed. Mat rooms are not being used, except for exigent circumstances by moving training event indoors due to inclement weather. Housekeeping staff clean classrooms and dormitory rooms daily using recommended disinfectant and sanitizers. All dormitory rooms are deep cleaned upon check out.

Letter from Secretary Hooks on Executive Orders and Law Enforcement, 8-13-2020

Alcohol Law Enforcement

  • Alcohol Law Enforcement issued additional hand sanitizer and gloves to all district personnel and cotninue to follow guidance from the governor and the ABC Commission regarding retail ABC establishments.
  • ALE has distributed protective masks, hand sanitizer and gloves to district personnel to use in accordance with NCDHHS and CDC guidance.
  • ALE developed a new online “COVID-19 Be A Responsible Seller/Server (BARS)” training for retail ABC businesses. The updated training is offered periodically through the DPS website. Some BARS training for ABC businesses and employees are still being taught in person on a case-by-case basis. Contact the nearest district office for more information. 

State Capitol Police

  • State Capitol Police issued protective equipment and hand sanitizer to all duty stations and continue to follow applicable guidance from  NCDHHS and the CDC. 
  • At the request of the NC Department of Cultural Resources, State Capitol Police is posted at the North Carolina Museum of Art on Blue Ridge Road seven days a week.
  • Chief Hawley serves on the Governor’s Novel Coronavirus Task Force.

State Highway Patrol

  • The State Highway Patrol is coordinating with the Sheriff’s Association and two Police Chief Associations (NC Police Chiefs Association and IACP) to ensure all North Carolina law enforcement agencies are informed and involved in the state’s planning and response to COVID-19
  • The State Highway Patrol issued personal protective equipment, hand sanitizer and first aid kits to personnel and are following guidance from NCDHHS and the CDC. 
  • Colonel McNeill serves on the Governor’s Novel Coronavirus Task Force and Lt. Colonel Gordon serves on the State Emergency Response Team and is collaborating with other state agencies on COVID-19 response.   


July 24, 2020 – NCNG completed its136-day activation in support of COVID-19 relief operations. At peak, 940 National Guardsmen were deployed across North Carolina to help with the state’s response. About 250 Guardsmen remain on standby ready to reengage with COVID-19 relief efforts if requested. Since March, North Carolina National Guard soldiers and airmen have:

  • Supported warehouse operations
  • Distributed personal protective equipment to medical facilities and EM agencies
    (4.4M masks, 1.6M bottles of hand sanitizer, 7.9M gloves, 766K face shields, 234K gowns, 707K shoe covers and 19K thermometers)
  • Distributed essential groceries and 5.6 million meals (including 332K school lunches)
  • Supported food banks and food pantries by sorting produce and goods
  • Provided cyber protection support for state networks thwarting 15 malicious attacks and 165 phishing emails
  • Made 2,000+ face coverings to protect fellow Guardsmen working in response of the pandemic
  • Tested 16,896 offenders and 380 poultry plant workers for COVID-19

April 28, 2020 - More than 900 NC National Guardsmen are supporting North Carolina's COVID-19 response. Currently, NCNG soldiers and airmen are:

  • Distributing PPE to EM or medical facilities across the state
  • Supporting warehouse operations
  • Supporting NC Food Banks
  • Helping schools distribute food to students
  • Providing cyber protection support to NCEM's IT infrastructure
  • Supporting county EOCs with liaison teams
  • Supporting OEMS in the operation of a medical support facility in Sandhill, NC
  • NCNG planners working with EM and NCDHHS

April 20, 2020 - More than 830 NC National Guardsmen on on duty across the state supporting North Carolina's COVID-19 response. Currently, NCNG soldiers and airmen are:

  • Distributing PPE to EM or medical facilities across the state
  • Supporting warehouse operations
  • Providing cyber protection support to NCEM's IT infrastructure
  • Supporting county EOCs with liaison teams
  • NCNG planners working with EM and NCDHHS

Guard is prepared to support additional missions such as food distribution, and support to state food bank operations, COVID-19 testing teams and others if needed. 

April 8, 2020 - More than 240 NC National Guardsmen are on duty supporting COVID-19 response; if required an additional 1,000 Guardsmen are available for duty. Current missions include: logistics and warehouse support, commodities transport, cyber and communications support, basic construction and engineering, transportation of essential personnel (nurses, doctors), helicopter transport of commodities; help with disinfecting/cleaning common public spaces; 42nd civil support team capabilities (hazmat identification) and PPE experts can assist medical staff; collecting and delivering samples; support to local law enforcement and highway patrol; health and wellness checks; response planners assisting state partners, liaisons and support to state emergency operations centers, and much more if required like; power generation support, medical support (nurses and doctors), and shelter support.

COVID-19 News Releases

COVID-19 Executive Orders

Check here to find Executive Orders and Frequently Asked Questions related to North Carolina's response to the coronavirus.