Serving time for a crime is a crisis for any inmate and their family, and personal connection is a crucial part of recovery for everyone. That is why it is so important to make sure inmates can easily get in contact with their loved ones, and getting cheaper rates for prison inmate calls is a major step.
There are many benefits to having cheaper rates, such as better mental health for inmates and their families, financial savings for families already in a bad situation, and fair treatment for prison inmates.
For those who are incarcerated, being able to call loved ones is a necessity for mental well-being. Many in prison have families, spouses, and children, but are not able to talk to them often because the price of making a call is too high.
Being able to speak with their loved ones regularly helps many inmates maintain social connections, which are incredibly valuable when it comes time to re-enter society. It also better helps mend family relations when the inmate is released.
Imagine a child feeling estranged from a parent after their mother or father was held in prison for years with little ability to contact them and form bonds. Keeping phone rates for prison inmates helps not only those on the inside but those on the outside as well.
Families with a loved one in prison may often be struggling financially or otherwise unable to afford the exorbitant rates imposed on prisoners. While the inmates are typically the ones directly charged for a phone call, the families are usually ultimately providing the money.
Keeping cheaper rates for prison inmate calls would help those in crisis save around $10-$20 on each call.
That may seem like a small amount, but it could make all the difference when it comes to deciding if the family needs groceries or some talk-time with a family member more. Lower rates would relieve some financial burden and help families make connections a priority.
Prison inmates, while serving time for a crime, are still citizens and human beings to be treated with respect. Many companies seem to be taking advantage of inmates and their loved ones, charging higher rates because they know the inmate has no choice but to pay.
This ethical debate over the fairness of charging inmates multiple times more than other citizens in the same area has been going on for years.
Reducing the rates of prison calls would take an emotional burden off the families and inmates in addition to helping relieve them financially.