Over the last few decades, there has been an intense debate about the proper price prisoners should be forced to pay on outgoing phone calls. There are a couple schools of thought. The first holds that prisoners are wards of the state, with no real right to any guarantee of cheap outgoing phone rates. The second view holds that prison communication is a public good, allowing for prisoners to maintain meaningful relationships with their family members on the outside and ultimately leading to reduced recidivism and violence within the prison itself.
In strictly legal terms, the first school of thought is certainly right. There is no guarantee, whatsoever, in the United States that prisoner should be able to enjoy any communications at all, much less telecommunications at a guaranteed low price. However, many wardens and other prison officials have determined that the second school of thought has quite a bit of merit.
Studies have shown that prisoners who are able to maintain meaningful relationships with those on the outside, particularly their immediate loved ones and small children, are far less likely to pose serious security threats to the institutions themselves. They also tend to do much better upon release, with drastically lower recidivism rates than for those who are unable to maintain meaningful relationships with those on the outside.
For this reason, Securus Technologies, one of the leading prison communications firms in the country, has made its sole mission to provide cost-effective solutions to prison inmates throughout the country. Throughout most of the institutions in which it operates, the average rate for an outgoing phone call is just $0.15 per minute. At such low costs, most prisoners are able to stay in frequent contact with their loved ones on the outside.
This is just one way that Securus is helping to make America’s prison safer.