"Wireless Prisons" Exploit Inmates with High Users Fees, Claims Study
"Prisons should be wary of private communications firms that 'exploit'
incarcerated individuals by charging high fees for the use of their
services, the Prison Policy Initiative (PPI) warned in a report today.
In a study of a contract awarded by the Colorado Department of
Corrections to GTL (formerly Global Tel*Link) to provide computer
tablets to inmates of the state’s prisons, PPI charged prisoners would
be forced to pay 'exploitive pay-to-play' and subscription-based fees
far higher than they would pay outside.
For example, inmates would have to pay 49 cents per electronic
message or $19.99 a month for a music subscription. The contract gives
GTL the power to raise prices when it suits the company’s interests, or 'to back out of the contract if it doesn’t make as much money as it
hopes to,' wrote Stephen Raher in the report, entitled, 'The Wireless
Prison: How Colorado’s tablet computer program misses opportunities and
monetizes the poor.'”
View the Report