Campaign for Prison Phone Justice

The "Campaign for Prison Phone Justice" is challenging prison phone kickbacks and the U.S. Prison Telephone Industry.

My family can’t afford the calls

Jun 7, 2013 | Nation Inside Team

A mother in Virginia lays out the case for affordable prison phone calls.

Screen Shot 2016-06-07 at 10.12.26 PMAudio Submission by, Anonymous
Amended Transcription of Audio:

Hi, I’m calling today because sometimes I cannot talk to my son for months at a time because it is so expensive because of Global Tel*Link, which is the company they use at the correctional center that he is in in Virginia.

This cost can be [exorbitant], I mean, completely expensive to the point that we can’t talk to him for months at a time. For one thing, my husband and I are both unemployed. We’ve been unemployed for extended amounts of time. The money that we do get is, like, unemployment. So, because we are short on money, and then you add in the high cost of being able to speak to my son, it’s just been unbelievable. And, I just want to say that they have to do something to lower this cost because it’s proven, it’s a proven fact, that if people are incarcerated but they are supported by their families, and speak to their families, and interact with their families, they do better, and then when they’re released they also do better in society.

So, why is this situation…the way it is where it’s impossible for people to speak to their kids, or their husbands, or y’know whatever who’s incarcerated? And it just makes it worse on the system because the incarcerated individuals are unhappy, the families are unhappy. So it needs to be reformed, it needs to be changed, it needs to be affordable for families so that they can talk to their loved ones that are behind bars. Just because a person is behind bars doesn’t mean they stop living. They still live, and they can still contribute to society and, even from behind bars. And one of the ways they can contribute is by being supported by their families, and by getting phone calls. So, I think that this needs to be reformed, it needs to be more affordable…to the point where it’s just, like, very inexpensive to speak to somebody behind bars. Because it helps everybody. It helps the families, it helps the people that are behind bars, it helps society at large.

Thank you very much.

Have a story to tell? Add your story