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Court Updates Face Covering Policy

Wednesday, March 2, 2022

Pursuant to unanimous votes by the Facility Security Committees for the federal courthouses in the Southern District of Indiana, Chief Judge Tanya Walton Pratt today issued a General Order, effective March 7, 2022, stating that people are recommended, but no longer required, to wear face coverings or maintain physical distance while entering and occupying the public spaces of the federal courthouses in the Southern District of Indiana. All members of the public entering the courthouses will be asked health screening questions by the court security officers.

The General Order contains provisions allowing tenant agencies in the courthouses to determine the face covering and social distancing policies in their own spaces. Judges have the authority to determine such policies in their courtrooms, chambers, and any other spaces in which a court proceeding is being conducted, including at naturalization ceremonies.

All persons summoned for jury service, and court staff interacting with such persons, must wear face coverings while in rooms and public spaces designated for juror check-in, orientation, and related activities until such persons enter a courtroom, at which time the rules and requirements of the presiding Judge take effect.

The Court will continue to accept filings from pro se litigants via email. Information on how to do so can be found in a previous General Order. Drop boxes for filings also remain accessible at all courthouses.

The District Court has also created a COVID-19 response page on its website that contains all orders, press releases, and other information regarding Court operations during the COVID-19 pandemic. The COVID-19 response page will be updated with the above changes on Monday, March 7, 2022.