District of Columbia Central Detention Facility

The Central Detention Facility (CDF/DC Jail) is located in Southeast DC at 1901 D Street, SE, and it was opened in 1976. In July 2002, the United States District Court for the District of Columbia vacated the population capacity limit at the DC Jail imposed in the 1985 Campbell v. McGruder court ruling. 

In October 2007, the Executive Administration established a population capacity at the jail of 2,164. This number is within the ranges recommended by two consultants hired independently by the Council and the Department of Corrections leadership during 2004 and supports the agency’s compliance with the Jail Improvement Act of 2003. The majority of male inmates (females are housed at the Correctional Treatment Facility) housed in the Central Detention Facility are awaiting adjudication of cases or are sentenced for misdemeanor offenses. As a result of the National Capital Revitalization and Self-Government Improvement Act of 1997, sentenced felons are transferred to the Federal Bureau of Prisons.

The DC Department of Corrections contracts with several community release programs who operate facilities known as community correctional centers or halfway houses.  The agency has contracts with three private and independently operated halfway houses: Extended House, Inc., Fairview and Hope Village.  

The US District Court for DC and the Superior Court of DC place pretrial offenders and sentenced misdemeanants in halfway houses as an alternative to incarceration.

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District of Columbia Central Detention Facility

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Visiting Hours and Rules

The D.C. Department of Corrections offers visitation for the families and loved ones of those incarcerated in their facilities. Most social visits for inmates housed at the D.C. Jail are conducted through video visitation. However, as an incentive for positive behavior, face to face visitation is now available for eligible inmates. 

Social visits at the DC Jail are conducted at the Department’s Video Visitation Center, located at the DC General Hospital complex (adjacent to the jail), and in select community visitation locations. 

There is also a new Video Visitation Center which is located behind the Correctional Treatment Facility (1901 E Street, SE, Washington, DC 20009), on the ground level of The READY Center.

All visits must be scheduled via the Internet or by calling 1 (888) 906-6394 or (202) 442-6155 (Tuesday through Saturday from 9 am-5 pm).

Visits are conducted on Wednesday through Sunday starting at 11 am and ending at 10 pm. The last session begins at 9 pm. Visitation hours at the community locations differ. Please see below for visitation hours for each satellite location. 

DOC encourages all visitors to arrive at least fifteen minutes prior to the scheduled visit. Visits must start on time and are automatically cancelled if visitors arrive late.

Inmates are allowed two 45-minute social visits per weekㅡvisits are free and by appointment only. However, one adult and up to two minor children (under the age of 18) may enter the video visitation room to visit. Additional minor children may be rotated in during the forty-five minute visitation period as long as they are supervised by an adult while in the waiting area.

At all times, minor children entering the VVC and satellite locations must be supervised by an adult.

Satellite Locations and Hours

Anacostia Library
1800 Good Hope Rd SE
Washington, DC 20020
Visits are conducted Thursdays and Sundays 2 to 4pm.

Bald Eagle Recreation Center
100 Joliet St SW
Washington, DC 20032
Visits are conducted Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday from 11am to 3pm.

Martin Luther King Library
901 G St NW
Washington, DC 20001
Visits are conducted Thursdays from 2 pm to 8 pm, and Fridays/Sundays from 2 pm – 5 pm.

Capitol View Neighborhood Library
5001 Central Ave SE
Washington, DC 20019

Physical Address

Central Detention Facility/DC Jail
1901 D Street SE
Washington, DC 20003

Driving Directions: https://goo.gl/maps/4xn3umRvXajLzQQw9

General Phone Number


Inmate Mailing Address(es)

Inmate Name, ID Number
Central Detention Facility
1901 D Street SE
Washington, DC 20003

How to Call an Inmate

You can’t call an inmate who is incarcerated at the Central Detention Facility. However, the inmates do have access to phones and can call you during approved hours. For complete details on how to call an inmate in District of Columbia, please click here.

How to Send Money

All inmates are set-up with a finance account during their intake process. This account holds any money that was in their possession at the time of intake and any money earned from work details, as well as deposits made by family and friends. 

Family and friends can send money to a Department of Corrections inmate through Western Union, OffenderConnect, or by using the Inmate Connector Kiosk in the Correctional Treatment Facility (CTF) lobby, 1901 E Street, SE, Washington, DC 20003. However, automated payments can only be made through Western Union or OffenderConnect. 

Below are three easy ways to send money through Western Union:

  • Online - Fees are as low as $3.95. Visit Western Union.
  • By telephone - Fees are as low as $5.95. Call 1 (800) 634-3422 to make telephone deposits.
  • Walk-in cash payments - Fees are as low as $5.95. Call 1 (800) 325-6000 or visit Western Union for agent locations.

For phone or walk-in payments, use this guide when filling in the blue Quick Collection Form.

Code City: DCGOV
State: DC
Sender's Acct#: Include inmate# and inmate last name

Offender Connect is a commercial service that allows a user to add money to an inmate's phone account or transfer money to a commissary account. This fast, reliable service allows friends and family to use a credit card to add money online through the GTL Connect Network.

Programs For Inmates

The Department offers a variety of programs to inmates housed at the DC Jail, including the following:

Anger and Stress Management
Group counseling using a variety of cognitive behavioral techniques for managing anger and stress

Ashland University
On-line course offered to DOC College and Career Readiness Department. Eligible students are supplied with secured tablets to participate in this course

Attorney General, Office of the DC
Paternity and child support services.

Bread for the City
Orientation regarding legal issues and community resources and supports

Catholic Charities-Welcome Home Reentry Program
Catholic Charities provides mentoring and community-based reentry services

CDL Self Study Guide
DOC provided self-study materials for written commercial driving tests

Collaborative Solutions for Communities (CSC)
Based on DOC referral family reunification case management is provided for female returning citizens through home visits, family advocacy, family group decision making, parenting education/ support and connections to community resources

Commercial Cleaning
Janitorial training for commercial establishments to include certificates in floor and carpet care, bathroom care and hygiene, and commercial cleaning products use

Digital Literacy
DOC provides computer technology training ranging from introduction to computers to use of operating systems, hardware and software

Court Services and Offender Supervision Agency (CSOSA)
CSOSA is a federal agency providing supervision of adults on probation, parole, and supervised release

Criminon New Life DC
Group counseling to help individuals understand and model ethical behavior for making favorable changes in their lives

Culinary Arts/Aramark
The DOC food services vendor provides ServSafe certification instruction and testing 

DC Central Kitchen (DCCK)
DCCK provides food services training and associated life skills to returning citizens

DC Department of Employment Services (DOES)
Five week program classroom and self-study activities conducted by DOES staff: Includes job readiness skills building in communications, conflict resolution, anger management, decision making, interviewing, resume preparation, electronic job searches, and training/apprenticeship opportunities.

DC Department of Human Services (DHS)
DHS Comes into to DOC to take being enrolling, impending, returning citizens in food stamps, Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) and/or Medicaid programs prior to release

DC Mayor’s Office of Returning Citizens Affairs (MORCA)
MORCA provides training and job placement, computer labs, referrals to reentry-focused services

DC Office of the State Superintendent for Education (OSSE)
Oversight and funding for GED testing

DC Public Defender Office (PDS)
PDS provides legal representation in criminal and civil matters and during institutional disciplinary hearings for offenses that can be subject to criminal prosecution

DC Public Library (DCPL)
The DCPL provides a satellite library at the CDF and CTF and issues library cards to returning citizens as they are released for access to DCPL community-based computers, job search, and legal assistance

DC Public Schools – Youth and Special Education (DCPS)
Taught by DC Public School instructors, juveniles receive the same public education, special needs curriculum, and afterschool care as provided in the community

DC Recovery Community Alliance (DCRCA)
DCRCA provides12-Step Meetings and recovery coaching to both men and women

Emery Work Bed Program (EWBP)
EWBP provides transitional housing for male returning citizens

Educational Services
DOC administers the CASAS Assessment to determine placement in open enrollment/self-paced adult basic education (ABE), Pre-GED, GED Classes, provides lesson plans, and classroom instruction in preparation for the GED state examination

Educational Services Greater Washington (ESGW)
ESGW provides occupational literacy to the women’s populations, reentry men, and juveniles in preparation for a career readiness track

English as a Second Language (ESL)
DOC provides educational language course for individuals learning English

Employment Techniques and Awareness Program (ETAP)
DOC provides employment life skills, resume writing, application completion, and how to talk about one’s criminal record

Empowerment Sessions
These sessions are conducted by speakers to include Authors/Poets, City Council members, small business owners, Judges, approved ex-offenders or staff. The sessions may be continuous or a one-time session given to motivate, guide, inspire, and give information to the inmate population

Free Minds Book Club
Free Minds uses books, creative writing, and peer support to empower youth charged as adults for their violent crimes

Friendship Place
Friendship Place provides free mail service for returning citizens who don’t have a permanent address

Georgetown University School of Law
Georgetown Street Law provides information about the justice system, legal rights, and returning citizen’s role in the community

Graphic Arts
DOC provides vocational training in typesetting, illustrations, and color in order to produce various print media

Hope Foundation Reentry Network, Inc.
The Hope Foundation provides parenting and family reunification, addictions prevention services, family reunification, and transitional housing

Howard University Inside Out
University students and DOC students in DOC classroom setting to learn from each other about the effects of crime on victims/community/perpetrator; the criminal justice system and related social issues

Insight on the Inside/Mindfulness Meditation
Mindfulness Meditation teaches participants to be present with whatever is happening within themselves through the practice of breathing and developing stress management skills

Jubilee Housing
Jubilee Housing provides transitional housing and life skills designed to reduce the likelihood of recidivism

Jubilee Jobs
Jubilee Jobs provides employment assistance

La Casa House
La Casa House provides transitional housing; life skills, mental health and substance abuse counseling to individuals

La Clinica de Pueblo
La Clinica de Pueblo provides health care education and treatment for the Latino community

Little Friends for Peace
LFFP provides cognitive behavior and life skills groups to reduce violence in the community

Living Independence for Everyone (L.I.F.E)
Cognitive behavioral group activities and self-help classes are held in Reentry Men’s Unit

Certified as a mental health developmental disabilities program and core service agency; providing community day treatment and reentry services

Miriam’s Kitchen
Miriam’s Kitchen provides returning citizens with free mail service and funds to obtain identification

N Street Village
Transitional housing, a day program and wrap-around case management and services.

Prison SMART
Stress management through yoga, meditation, and specific breathing techniques

Regional Addiction Prevention Inc. (Rap Inc.)
Assesses and places returning citizens in community-based residential substance abuse treatment; HIV/AIDS care; emergency and transitional housing; and medical services

Reintegrating Alternative Personal Program (RAPP)
Mentors, counseling, food distribution; clothing closet; employment and job training

Religious Services
Local church prison ministries and individuals provide a myriad of religious services

Residential Substance Abuse Treatment (RSAT)
DOC 30-120 day substance use treatment for men and women

Salvation Army Harbor Lights
Harbor Lights is a 136-bed facility, providing case management and counseling, anger and grief-management; and employment training

Salvation Army Turning Points
Turning Points provides transitional housing for families, crisis intervention, individual and family counseling, advocacy, and independent living skills

Samaritan Ministries
Job readiness and community connections are provided for pre-GED adult education

So Others Might Eat (SOME)
Housing, mental health and substance abuse counseling, vocational training, and job placement.

Unity Medical-Mental Health
Facility and community medical and mental health care.

University of the District of Columbia Community College Career & Technical Education Classes
UDC-CC partners with DOC and OSSE, to provide short term, career-specific credentialed training in Hospitality, Customer Service and Retail Sales 

University of Maryland “LETS Act” group
Helps RSAT clients set specific goals and activities designed to decrease depression and support sobriety/recovery, and monitor their progress

DC Veterans’ Administration
Reentry Specialist regularly comes into the CDF to link veterans to community resources

Voices for a Second Chance (VSC)
VSC is a first responder when incarcerated (notifying family and attorney; retrieving property from arresting precinct); and provides birthday cards for inmates to send to loved ones. Community based services include use of office phone/internet, free mail service, bus tokens, housing referrals, lunch, and funds to secure an ID card.

Virginia Williams Hands on Mentoring Program (VWHOMP)
Mentoring and assistance with housing, clothing, and food all free of charge for 1 year. This service is to assist returning citizens with becoming self-sufficient.

The halfway houses offer a variety of educational opportunities and other programming services that include the following:

  • Case Management
  • Employment Assistance/Job Readiness
  • Individual and Group Counseling
  • Substance Abuse Intervention in-house NA/AA Meetings/Referrals
  • Academic Tutoring
  • GED Preparation
  • Basic Life Skills
  • Family Planning
  • Peer Association
  • Financial Assistance
  • Health Issues
  • Interpersonal Communication/Socialization Skills
  • Stress/Anger Management
  • AIDS/HIV Awareness
  • Bible Study/Prison Fellowship (provided by volunteers)
  • Social Services Assistance/Referrals

Pictures of District of Columbia Central Detention Facility

Careers at District of Columbia Central Detention Facility

It takes many different kinds of professionals with various skill sets to provide all the services required to operate the facilities in Washington DC. 

These include positions such as Case Managers, Facility Maintenance Personnel, Inmate Program Managers, Fleet Managers, Health Services Administrators, Acquisitions Management Professionals, Information Technology  and Telecommunications Professionals, Human Resources Management, Investigative Services, Legislative and Government Affairs specialists, Administrative Assistants, and other professionals.

For more information about the available positions, visit their website.