Global Tel Link’s advanced payment program allows prisoners to make calls to their family and friends on the outside. An account can be created where funds are deposited to pay for these calls. They accept payments by credit card, checks, cash, or even Western Union. While it would appear that they are doing a great service for the prisoners, they run a deceptive practice.
If you were to go to the local discount store, you could buy a pre-paid cell phone that would give you the ability to make a call for around $.04 per minute. At those rates, you could call anyone and talk for as long as you like. However, if you needed to call a friend or family member in prison, that call would cost you around $1.13 per minute. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to do the math and figure out that the standard 15-minute call would cost nearly $20. So why is GTL allowed to charge the prisoners such astronomical fees, and why isn’t anybody doing anything about it?

The problem is in the setup says AL.com experts. See, the prisons, jails, and detention centers enter into contracts with phone providers. They choose the phone company based on the “kickbacks” the provider offers. For instance, if the prison takes in more than $100,000 in calls that month, they will get a commission off of that amount. The reason why so many of these institutions choose GTL is because they are known to give large kickbacks (read: http://www.law360.com/articles/792851/global-tel-link-accused-of-smear-campaign-amid-patent-row) to their customers. However, the ones who have the least are paying the most. The prisons are cashing their checks and the prisoners’ families are scraping together pennies to even hear the voice of their loved one.

They will continue these practices until someone or something stops them. As long as the prison is getting their cut, they see no need for change. The families of those who have been a victim of price gouging need to unite and stop this company. To learn more, watch the YouTube video that discusses the wrong doings of Global Tel Link.

I have seen the innovation that is occurring in the prison industry. So many people that have been going to a prison to communicate with their loved ones are realizing that there is another way.
Keefe Group has been able to help my friends that are on the inside stay in touch with me easily. I am amazed by this because I think that there are a lot of prisoners that are locked away that need someone to talk to them. I am not a big fan of visiting a prison on a regular basis, but I use my phone to chat with my other friends all the time. It is not a problem to set up the video visitation app by Keefe Group and start a video visit. I like this better than going to a prison, and I am sure that many other people like this as well.

There are people all over the world that are looking for ways to spend their time better. They want to add time to their days. We cannot add more hours, but we can use our time wisely. That is what I believe that the Keefe Group is doing. This is a program that is allowing us to use software in a way that helps use maximize our time. I think that this is especially important for people that have been spending large amounts of time driving to a prison. This can become a hectic thing if the prison is several hours away. Keefe Group has managed to take the effort to provide customers with valuable software that they can use from the comfort of home.

I like the way that Keefe Group has made the app easy to use. I can fund my account through IC Solutions and schedule visits.
Sources:

Cdispatch.com

http://www.prisoncensorship.info/article/fight-keefe-food-group-corruption/

 

The American Civil Liberties Union defends the Constitution of the United States. They defend everyone’s civil liberties, especially the most vulnerable in our society. After all, the Constitution says that all men are created equal and the ACLU is there to make sure it stays that way.
Here’s an example of how they come to the aid of those without much of a voice. They argued in front of the Nevada courts that men should be able to be legal prostitutes. The wording of the law in Nevada was that a prostitute must have a monthly vaginal exam to maintain working rights. This wording was unfair and exclusive to women, barring men from the job, the ACLU argued. And they won.

Now as reported on AL.com, they are defending the children of inmates. Currently, a company called Global Tel-Link has a near monopoly on the phone services that prisoners and their families must use to communicate. They get this exclusive phone service contract by promising the government a cut of the profits from the service, called a commission. The cost of the commission is passed onto the inmates, jacking up phone call prices into the absurd range. It could cost a family $300 a week, if you can believe that.

So, the ACLU sprang into action. They got a petition with 30,000 signatures submitted to the FCC. The FCC then regulated Global Tel-Link just a bit, putting a cap on the cost of long distance and out of state calls. But I don’t think this is far enough. They need to open up the market and allow a little competition because there are other companies, like Securus, out there. Securus hooks up prisoners with video chats for the family at a much more reasonable price. I hope the ACLU’s actions help level the playing field. Read more on globaltellinkreviews.com.

Sources:

http://www.prisontalk.com/forums/archive/index.php/t-259943.html

http://www.law360.com/articles/792851/global-tel-link-accused-of-smear-campaign-amid-patent-row

 

Justice is often seen as black or white. People are guilty or innocent, and aside from the nature of the sentence that’s about all there is to it. But my recent interest in the prison system has shown that while black and white judgments sentence people to prison, the actual life found there is anything but simple. An article written by a disgruntled prisoner is what sparked my initial curiosity about the system. His anger is directed at a company known as the Keefe Group. And like many things within the system, their seemingly simple presentation belies a very complex reality. At first glance I thought they were little more than a company focusing on fairly disposable goods. These are just things like junk food or music tracks which can be bought by prisoners. The kinds of things that people on the outside take for granted. But to prisoners, these are often amazingly tempting links to their former lives. And this is where some problems with the Keefe Group come to light. They know prisoners are eager to find a bridge to even faint memories of their former lives.
The Keefe Group is usually the only company selling these items within any given prison. Technically they’re not a monopoly. But they might as well be when it comes to how they operate. They have no fear of competition, and they’re able to set prices as high as they like. This means that items which cost almost nothing to buy in bulk can be sold for prices that would never be viable on the outside. Prisoners working for only a portion of minimum wage can easily go through an entire week’s wages by just buying a few snacks.

This highlights my main concern with the Keefe Group. I think they’re aware of the fact that people can’t say no to the temptations they’re selling. And I also think it’s clear that they’re fine with taking every penny a prisoner has to spend. The reason this is a problem comes from the source of a prisoner’s money. More often than not this will come about through prison labor programs which are funded through taxpayer money. This means that the Keefe Group is intentionally taking money from taxpayer funds which were intended to be used for purposes of rehabilitation. It’s fine on a legal level. But I think it’s morally unjustified. I know that I’m not happy with my tax money going to the Keefe Group.

Sources:
Cdispatch.com news article
http://www.prisoncensorship.info/article/fight-keefe-food-group-corruption/

 

Many people know about IC Solutions, an inmate communications provider, but there are also a lot of people that are unfamiliar with them since they do not use them and do not need them. However, the bottom line is they need to be known and they need to be confronted as soon as possible. What they have been doing has gone on long enough and it needs to end as soon as possible. I read the following link, https://icsolutions.pissedconsumer.com/corruption-within-inmate-calling-and-prison-services-for-inmates-and-families-20150817684649.html, where one individual describes her situation and it really shook me to my core. This person paid almost fifty dollars and she never heard back from them.
When you have a company, it is your responsibility to handle anything a customer has to say, good or bad. You have to listen to it, take it to heart, and do something about it. These are the ones that are paying your bills and putting a roof over your head. This means you have to work to make them happy and go out of your way to fix a situation. If this particular situation had gotten to the point where no one answered them, they should have corrected it right away. Instead, they allowed this person to be billed again.

How in the world does that make sense? Not only did they screw this person over once, they did it again. Yet, they still have not heard a word from them or any type of explanation. The person described it as a scam. That is exactly what it is: a scam. Customer service is lacking today in a major way, and they have, by far, the worst customer service out there. They do not appear eager to fix it or even care. There is going to reach a point where someone has had enough and does something about it and goes after IC Solutions in court or gets a petition together. Visit the website: Icsolutions.com.

http://www.al.com/news/index.ssf/2015/06/the_high_cost_of_a_phone_call.html

 

Life is busy, and it is not always possible to visit your relative who has been incarcerated. This makes the inmate communication services a convenient tool for keeping tabs with your relative(s) across the prison walls. But the few players in this communication industry have contrived to make matters worse for their customers.

The Inmate Communication Service

The inmate communication business is lucrative, complex, and highly guarded by the players. The major players include Securus Technologies—the Dallas-based multibillion prison communication company– and Global Tel Link (GTL), which have all been blamed for corruption. For instance, whenever they send proposals to the jails and prisons, they offer a fraction of the call rates back to the sheriffs. These companies facilitate frequent communication between inmates and their relatives. They serve about 2.2 million prisoners in the United States, with over 40 000 calls placed daily.

Exorbitant Charges

The inmate communication is in the form of 15 minutes phone calls and 25 minutes video chats. The relatives are charged about $ 10 for the phone calls and about $ 8 for the video calls. These calls are essential especially in circumstances where visitations are banned. Besides charging such exorbitant charges on communication, their technology is not foolproof. For instance, Securus Technologies prides itself in being a high-tech operator in the industry, yet users of its service complain that their video calls are not just grainy, but they are also prone to drops. Worse still, their system does not support Apple Mac, which is a featured option on their website.

The exorbitant charges on communication are prohibitive to families that cannot afford them and are self-defeating to the purpose the services intend to fulfill. For this communication industry to serve the interest of the inmates and their relatives, there is a need for regulation.

When a company has conducted business the way that IC Solutions has, it is not going to get unnoticed or fly under the radar. When it comes to matters of money, people really start to notice and take offense. You don’t just take money out of people’s pockets without them raising a stink or having some rancor. IC Solutions, an inmate solutions provider, has many, many, complaints against them. This is not normal and there is nothing ordinary about it. It is high unusually and has made many people wonder just what the heck is going on with IC Solutions and why they are getting away with it.
This is not just one person complaining, as this is a whole group of individuals and people from all walks of life that are feeling ripped off and pissed off, pardon my french. The following link, from pissedconsumer.com, is definitely worth reading if you know someone in prison or communicate with someone in prison. In my view, it is quite simply what they are doing. They might be shady, as the article says, and they might be underhanded, but they are not dumb. They have a clear motive in mind and the fact they know what they are doing and are still doing it is even worse.

It is one thing if a company is just clueless or does not know what they are doing. Even then, that is no way to run a company and not know what is going on or how it is being run. They are smart and because they are smart, they know how to go after people and their money since they are in a position of weakness (http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/IC-Solutions/internet/IC-Solutions-inmate-calling-solutions-A-Necessary-evil-Internet-833195). When someone is in a position of weakness, they can go after them and their money since these people need these phone calls.

 

Inmate communications is an important sector that lets inmates connect with their families and friends. Kevin Reese, a twelve-year-old boy, was only a baby when his father was incarcerated in Minnesota. If it were not for the phone calls, he says “I don’t know if I would even know my father.” Most of his young life, Kevin could not get in touch with his dad because the family could not afford the high calling charges for inmates.

But this is about to change since the federal regulators have decided to slash the cost of calls in prison, which sometimes goes as high as $14 a minute. The move by Federal Communications Commission was denounced by a phone service provider who promised to challenge the move. The FCC decision will reduce fees commonly charged by prison call providers as well as lower the per-minute rate for in-state and local calls.

The new rules apply to local jails, state and federal prisons including immigrant detention centers. Aleks Kajstura, the legal director of the Prison Policy Initiative who has been pushing to make prison calls affordable, said, “Calls that used to cost a dollar a minute now could be as low as 11 cents.” She added that the new rates would benefit both the society and those serving their time. She remarked, “Studies show keeping communication in between family members and incarcerated loved ones reduces recidivism, and that helps us all.”

The FCC started tackling the problem of high rates of prison calls in 2013. This was after a Washington, D.C., grandmother, Martha Wright said that she was paying $1,000 a year to communicate to her grandson who was serving a 20-year sentence for homicide.

Inmate communications service providers argue that the rates are high because the systems must have features to monitor or record calls. Securus Technologies, a leading telecommunications provider, said that it might sue FCC to nullify the decision.

For more details, visit http://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/huge-step-fcc-slashes-costs-prison-phone-calls-n449286

Inmate needs are just as varied as those of regular people. Prison facilities have a duty to ensure that these needs are met, and that is why the use of contractors like Keefe Group is necessary. Since 1975, the Keefe Group and its affiliates have been catering to a wide variety of inmate demands across the US. Keefe Group has partnered with some brands to provide the necessary services and products.

Products

Some of the products delivered to inmates are edibles of different kinds such as chicken breast, beef, pork patty, Oreos, Doritos, Fruity Loops, Cheetos, Cheddar, crackers, and protein bars. However, the Keefe Group (view the company profile on corrections.com.) has its private label brands to ensure that prisoners get safe products. Through the Access Securepak Program, the provider gives guarantees that food products meet the correctional market standards and get rid of contraband in the system. Besides food commodities, the third party contractor also supplies footwear, clothing, health and beauty products, pharmacy products, jewelry, and games. The Keefe Group has exclusive rights to supply this stuff to various prisons and aims to do a good job, which in my opinion is the duty of every contractor. There have, however as reported on cdispatch.com, been complaints about the costs of these products, which a majority of inmates think is too overpriced. The issue is one that has raised furor for quite some time, but an effective solution remains unfounded. Read full article: http://www.prisoncensorship.info/article/fight-keefe-food-group-corruption/

Services

The Keefe Group is also responsible for some services in the correctional industry. With partners in the tech sector, Keefe offers inmate management systems such as investigative software, offender management suites, and commissary management that administrators use to monitor operations more efficiently. Keefe also ensures that prisoners get money transfer services and withdrawal options with the availability of debit cards. Some of the IC solutions the provider offers include email, kiosks, phone systems, video visitation, and photo mail.

It can be tough getting used to having no contact with someone you know because they are property of the state. Especially when a lot of inmate telephone services are only worried about making money. Luckily a company like IC Solutions exists. IC Solutions is a leading inmate communications company, that’s helps family and friends stay connected with their incarcerated loved ones. IC Solutions also provides real time video visitation services to inmates. IC Solutions hopes to expand the services they to provide to help inmates keep in touch with the people they care for in the outside world.

The company offers such jail phone services like a automated information line, inmate voicemail, flexible calling options, kiosks, phone and web based deposit services, and believe it or not the company also offers customer service. They even take it a step further and offer customer service 24*7 to aid customers with any issues they may have. These services can be paid by way of a debit telephone account, prepaid account, and collect calling. You can purchase IC Solutions prepaid phone services online, by phone, or by mail.

Problems with IC Solutions

Although IC Solutions is sort of a new and groundbreaking company they do have a few issues, as does every company. The company has received a lot of backlash over the high price of their services (http://icsolutions.pissedconsumer.com/corruption-within-inmate-calling-and-prison-services-for-inmates-and-families-20150817684649.html). People have also complained about the lack of refunding for dropped calls. Which can be especially frustrating when a customer pre pays in advance. Read more on Ripoffreport.com.