Prison bans tampons for visitors, cites contraband concern


RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — A Department of Corrections employee tells 8News that a new policy will prohibit visitors from wearing feminine hygiene products inside Virginia prisons.

A letter addressed to offenders and visitors of Nottoway Correctional Center explaining that, effective October 6, the use of tampons and/or menstrual cups are no longer to be worn during ‘visitation’ in response to recent inquiries of feminine hygiene products being used to smuggle contraband into jails. 

‘The use of tampons and/or menstrual cup hygiene items will be prohibited during visitation,’ the letter stated.

Sunday night, VDOC Director Harold Clarke replied to an email inquiring about the new policy and stated, ‘That correspondence is not accurate.’

‘I can assure you that the VADOC has not banned the use of feminine hygiene products for visitors,’ Clarke wrote.

A Department of Corrections employee on Monday, however, told 8News that the policy was in fact being implemented at Nottoway Correctional Center in Burkeville and other jails statewide. 

8News has reached out to the DOC director for further comment. Check back for updates. 

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