A North Carolina judge has ruled that state prisons must come up with a plan to test all inmates for COVID-19.
The ruling by Wake County Superior Court Judge Vinston Rozier came in response to a lawsuit claiming that inaction by prison officials has left inmates vulnerable to the virus.
In addition to mandating a plan for testing all prisoners, the judge ruled that inmate transfers should be sharply curtailed.
The suit was filed by the ACLU of North Carolina, the NAACP, and other civil rights advocates.
According to the News & Observer, fewer than six percent of state prison inmates have been tested.
Prison officials have previously said they were following federal guidelines that suggest testing when people show symptoms of the virus.
A prison spokesman says the Department of Public Safety is consulting with the North Carolina Department of Justice to determine the next steps.