FCC Chairman Wheeler, along with Commissioners Clyburn and Rosenworcel, released a statement today regarding Inmate Calling Rate Caps taking effect.
“Although the wheels of justice often turn slowly, relief for families of inmates has finally arrived. Today, a cap on inmate calling rates ordered by the FCC last fall takes effect, slashing the cost of interstate long-distance calls in some places by over 80%, from as much as $17 for a 15-minute call to a cap of $3.15 for that same call. This means that many families will no longer have to choose between talking to their loved ones in prison and paying their utility bills. It means that society will benefit from the decreased rates of recidivism that family contact brings.
While we wish our new rates could have taken effect the day we adopted them last year, today is the end of an even longer wait – 10 years – for the Washington, D.C. grandmother, Mrs. Martha Wright, who petitioned the FCC to act in 2003. Prisoners and their families, especially their children, are among the most vulnerable members of society. These families can now afford to keep in touch because the era of unreasonable and unjust phones rates has ended. But more remains to be done. We look forward to working on further reforms of inmate calling rates to ensure that millions of families can stay connected, for the benefit of their loved ones and for the good of our nation.”
See the release here.