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Virginia Department of Corrections — Public Safety First

Local and Regional Jails

Although local and regional jails are not under the direct authority of the Department of Corrections, the department is involved with conducting inspections/audits, completing jail construction project and staffing reviews for state reimbursement, managing contracts to provide work release opportunities, providing technical assistance, providing training, educating the general public on jail operations and responding to inmate related issues.

The Department of Corrections provides numerous services to local and regional jails throughout the Commonwealth in addition to responding to questions related to jail operation and concerns from family members of inmates housed in local jails. With an emphasis on providing these services, the Local Facilities section was created under the administration of Community Corrections in 1991, to serve as a liaison with the 81 city, county and regional jails and general public.

To ensure compliance with State Board of Corrections Standards for Local Jails and Lock-ups, the Compliance & Accreditation Unit's Local Facilities section conducts annual unannounced "Life, Health, Safety" Inspections, while its Certification section conducts triennial Certification Audits.

Technical Assistance
On- and off-site technical assistance is provided to jails by the Unit's Certification and Local Facilities sections to assist jails in meeting the requirements established in Board of Corrections Standards, to enhance operational efficiency and to provide policy and Code of Virginia interpretation.

Since jails hold state-responsible inmates, jail staff needs to be aware of Department of Corrections policies pertaining to these inmates. The Compliance & Accreditation Unit coordinates yearly training throughout the state to keep jail personnel informed of these policies and procedures. In addition, this Unit coordinates National Institute of Corrections-sponsored training on Objective Jail Classification.

Work Release
The Jail Contract Bed Work Release Program is a Cooperative Agreement between the Department of Corrections and local and regional jails throughout the Commonwealth with a primary goal to provide work opportunities in a location close to an inmate's release plan. The Compliance & Accreditation Unit negotiates and manages agreements with jails, while the Offender Management Services Unit processes and reviews inmate applications for participation in jail work release. Click here to learn more about the DOC's work release program. (Read more about Work Release)

Additional Information

Frequently Asked Questions

Resource Information: (on external websites)