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Ky. Supreme Court issues COVID-19 red zone guidelines

Kentucky Supreme Court building
Kentucky Supreme Court building(WKYT)
Published: Oct. 29, 2020 at 5:52 PM EDT
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FRANKFORT, Ky. (WKYT) - The Supreme Court of Kentucky has issued new guidelines to the state court system for COVID-19 precautions in red zone areas as cases surge.

“Health experts have warned that this fall and winter will be the darkest days of the pandemic,” Chief Justice of Kentucky John D. Minton Jr. said in an email to justices, judges, circuit court clerks and court employees. “I want to encourage all of you to remain vigilant and take the necessary precautions to protect yourselves, your co-workers and the people we serve.”

Chief Justice Minton said that maintaining court services depends on judges, circuit court clerks and court employees complying with public health guidelines and requiring the same of everyone who enters court facilities.

If a court system’s county falls into a COVID-19 red zone, the Supreme Court recommends conducting all court proceedings remotely, postponing jury trials until the county returns to the yellow zone, closing circuit court clerks offices, limiting court facility access, using facial coverings and practicing social distancing, and encouraging all employees who are able to telework to do so.

“I have been impressed time and again since March as I’ve watched you do whatever it takes to keep the courts open and serving the public,” Chief Justice Minton said in his message. “That kind of long-term determination is difficult to sustain and yet you get up every day and do it all over again. Thank you for mustering up the fortitude and commitment to continue our important work.”

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