Global Tel Link's (GTL) October 3, 2012 ex parte presentation to the FCC regarding Docket #96-128 (The Wright Petition) boasted of accomplishments like having the exclusive prison phone contracts with 33 state DOCs. It did not, however, brag about the exorbitant phone rates charged to prisoners and their families to maintain an unjust system of commissions kickbacks.
On October 8, 2012, Alex Friedmann, Associate Director of the Human Rights Defense Center and Associate Editor of Prison Legal News, responded to GTL's presentation, debunking a number of the company's claims.
GTL: Inmate calling requires specialized billing and collection to address security concerns.
Response: GTL and other prison phone service providers frequently cite the high cost of security measures for prison phone systems as justification for the high phone rates charged to prisoners and their families (i.e., the rates are high because security measures are expensive). In fact, prison phone companies can provide very low rates while still including such “costly” security measures. For example, in New York, which has banned kickbacks, the phone rates are low ($.048/minute for local, intrastate and interstate calls), even though the security measures required in prison phone systems are still included...
Download the PDFs of the GTL and HRDC filings to read more.