Skip to main content

Executive Order 2020-189 FAQs (No longer effective)

EO 2020-189
Temporary COVID-19 protocols for entry into Michigan Department of Corrections facilities and transfers to and from Department custody; temporary recommended COVID-19 protocols and enhanced early-release authorization for county jails, local lockups, and juvenile detention centers - Rescission of Executive Order 2020-170


Q: Does Executive Order 2020-189 apply to jails?

A: Compliance with Executive Order 2020-189 is mandatory for prisons and recommended for all other correctional and detention facilities. MDOC may not accept transfers from jails that do not comply with the testing protocols and risk reduction protocols of EO 2020-189.


Q: Where can I find CDC guidance for jails and other correctional facilities?

A: CDC guidance for correctional and detention facilities may be accessed at


Q: If a prisoner gets bonded out right away after being arrested, do they still have to be tested and quarantined?

A: Although testing is recommended for all inmates entering a facility, this requirement does not apply to inmates held outside general population, housed in single cells (i.e. without other inmates), released within 24 hours, and provided with educational materials on the importance of testing and contact tracing. Otherwise, all inmates must be tested at least once, no more than 48 hours after entry.


Q: What is the protocol when an inmate refuses testing at intake?

A: Any inmate who refuses testing at intake must be isolated for 14 days.


Q: What is the protocol when an inmate refuses testing or teats positive at release?

A: Any inmate who tests positive for COVID-19 or refuses testing at release must not be released into another congregate setting.


Q: For jails transferring to MDOC, can MDOC accept a transfer if the inmate was tested within 72 hours, but results are pending?

A: No. If a jail transferring to MDOC cannot reliably return results within 72 hours, they must seek assistance from MDHHS by emailing


Q: Does a jail or prison have to test an inmate twice if they are booked and then released or transferred in short order?  

A: A jail or prison must test an inmate within 72 hours prior to release or transfer. If the inmate’s entry test occurred with the 72 hours prior to release or transfer, no additional test is required.


Q: Do jails or prisons have to hold inmates otherwise due for release when unable to complete testing due to staff availability (e.g. when an inmate bonds out in the middle of the night)?

A: Jails and prisons should have plans in place to ensure that testing protocols may be conducted at all times when an inmate may become due for release, and should email if they need assistance developing these plans. Holding inmates when they are due for release, however, is not a substitute for a plan that satisfies this requirement.


Q: Can MDOC lodge parole violators in jails that have not satisfied both the risk reduction protocols and testing protocols required by Executive Order 2020-189?

A: Generally, no. MDOC can only lodge parole violators in jails that have satisfied both the risk reduction protocols and testing protocols required by the executive order, or jails that have requested assistance from MDHHS and been granted an adjustment to the timing requirements under section 4.