Updated Information – Restrictions on Personal Foreign Travel During the COVID-19 Pandemic

The Department of Justice (DOJ) recently informed the Office of Security Programs that requests by DEA employees to conduct personal foreign travel will be disapproved if the intended travel country is either designated a Level 4 (Do Not Travel) location by the Department of State (DoS) or Level 4 (COVID-19 Very High) location by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Until further notice from DOJ, the Office of Security Programs will check DoS and CDC travel advisories to determine if the country/city destination is designated as a Level 4 location. Requests for travel to any DoS or CDC designated Level 4 country will be disapproved. Requests are approved or disapproved based on DoS and CDC guidance on the date of submission. It is not possible to predict future DoS or CDC guidance.

The requirement to request approval to conduct personal foreign travel applies only to DEA employees. As of February 2021, Task Force Officers (TFOs) and contractors are not required to request approval to conduct personal foreign travel. Nonetheless, the Office of Security Programs encourages TFOs and contractors to consult with their parent agency/employer to determine if agency/employer specific travel restrictions exist. Employees are responsible for monitoring announcements from DoS and CDC for country/city specific travel and health advisories before submitting request via DOJ iReport. Country specific information related to travel restrictions can be obtained by checking the following websites DoS Travel and CDC Travel.

Employees are reminded to not contact DOJ for questions related to personal foreign travel. Employees whose request to conduct personal travel to a Level 4 designated country is based on a compelling circumstance such as the serious illness or death of a family member may contact Section Chief Genevieve Hardy-Curry or Associate Deputy Chief Inspector Owen Belton via email or Jabber to discuss the circumstances. Noncompliance with the requirement for employees to request approval to conduct personal foreign travel using DOJ iReport or conducting personal foreign travel after disapproval may result in administrative action. DOJ and DEA continue to focus on protecting the health and safety of each employee, TFO, and contractor as much as possible.

This message has been approved by Deputy Chief Inspector, Office of Security Programs