Video chat is a part of everyday life. You can log on to a variety of services and call one of your friends right now. Most of the time, it costs nothing. You can video chat so long as you have access to high-speed Internet. You can even video chat somebody all the way across the planet. With all of this in mind, it is high time that inmates and prisoners across this country have access to the same technology.
Inmates in over 178 different prison facilities across this country already have access to this video chat technology. But it is a little shortsighted to call it video chat. The technology, developed by Securus, does a whole lot more than simple telecommunication. The person trying to contact the inmate sets up an account on the Securus website. After logging into the newly created accounts, the user simply requests a video chat time. This request is sent to the prison facility and approved. Once approved, the user then logs back into the account at the appropriate time to start the video visitation. As you can see, this technology is a lot more complicated than a simple Skype session.
The applications of this technology are numerous, especially around the holidays. A stunning 110,000 visits per year happen on a smartphone. This means that more family members are getting mobile with their visitation. You can bring a smartphone into almost any venue, including the family’s living room, a sporting event, a play rehearsal, and anyplace else you can think of. This technology can really help the inmates communicate with their families, making reintegration into society a lot easier. Studies show that inmates who are well connected to their families on the inside of prison are much less likely to commit a crime when released from that prison.