Between July 2012 and June 2013, prisoners submitted or signed on to 1,754 letters or comments filed with the FCC regarding the Wright Petition!
In June 2012, the Campaign for Prison Phone Justice posted the first advertisement for the Campaign in Prison Legal News. We asked readers of the magazine to send letters to the FCC describing how they and their families have been impacted by the high cost of prison telephone calls.
One year later, close to 100,000 people and organizations have submitted comments or signed onto petitions filed with the FCC asking the Commission to act on the Wright Petition.
Between July 2012 and June 2013, prisoners submitted or signed on to 1,754 letters or comments filed with the FCC regarding the Wright Petition.* It is clear that many prisoners have been hard at work, organizing to inundate the FCC with stories of unfair phone rates, financial hardship and the struggle to maintain connections to their families.
When we first encouraged prisoners to contact the FCC in the June 2012 issue of PLN, we said “the prison facility which registers the most letters will be highlighted on the campaign website and will get a co-producer credit on our national radio program addressing the high cost of prison phone calls.”
So, congratulations to prisoners at SCI-Huntingdon in Huntingdon, Pennsylvania! The most filings of any prison or jail came from SCI-Huntingdon, with 174 letters submitted to the FCC. In their comments, many prisoners at SCI-Huntingdon called for “no connection fees,” “no commissions” and “a 10 minute free call for all inmates daily,” among other recommendations.
Prisoners at SCI-Greene in Waynesburg, PA came in second with 147 letters submitted. The third-highest number of letters, 72, came from prisoners at the Thumb Correctional Facility in Lapeer, Michigan.
Thanks to the amazing prisoners and families for contributing so much to the Wright Petition proceedings. We also want to thank the Prison Policy Initiative, Sum of Us, Justice Fellowship, CREDO Mobile and Color of Change for collectively obtaining around 90,000 signatures on petitions and comments filed with the FCC between November 2012 and March 2013.
We thank everyone who has sent letters to the FCC sharing your stories and standing up for change. The comment period on the Wright Petition is now closed and the FCC is currently reviewing thousands of submissions – including those filed by prison phone companies, civil rights organizations, law firms, and prisoners and their family members. Stay tuned for updates on the Campaign.
* This number is approximate. As it can take several weeks for the FCC to post filings on its website, the number is probably low. Also, many of the comments posted on the FCC’s docket had incomplete identifying information, so some submissions could not be credited to a specific individual or prison facility.