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Questions and Comments on Prisonpath



What is prison like

Since the launching of last September, we have received daily questions and comments about prisons and jails in the United States. Many of the questions  and comments involved important issues discussed in our articles such as; the status of felons in our society, life in prison for women, and the continuing harsh treatment of inmates in California and other states. Many inmate families have had questions about prison visitation, how to communicate with their family member in prison, the high cost of prison calls, how to send packages,and other topics of importance.

Every month, will publish five questions-comments, that we have received from our visitors which will hopefully help others who have to travel the Prisonpath.

1. John commented about our article, “The F Word
Submitted on 2013/07/22 at 12:50 am
I read this article a few weeks ago but the reality of it was brought home for me these past few days.

Today I was turned down for the second time in three days at rental properties because I have a felony record. Although, I have been clean for many years, graduated with my bachelors degree, I am involved in giving back to the community, hold a full time job, pursing a MA degree and I am a licensed minister– I am still turned down because I have felonies on my record.

I will be fine but my heart goes out to the millions of felons (mostly addicts) who are sincerely trying to turn their lives around despite these seemingly insurmountable odds.

*People do change…
By John

2. Diane commented regarding our inmate review of “Orange is the New Black”

I spent almost three years in Perryville prison and learned firsthand about the “just-us” system. Prison is a wake up call that no one wants but that everybody needs-because jail and prison can happen to ANYONE at anytime. Being innocent until proven guilty is a DREAM, not a reality, in this country. I never comprehended that until it happened to me! I had never been in trouble before and found myself staring down the barrel of an unjust sentence with no ammunition to fight a battle with since my public pretender was exactly that. He was pretending to be a lawyer.

In a case that should have gotten probation at the worst, instead I was offered a plea for 3 years. Arizona is a brutal state with regard to sentencing, so off to Perryville I went. I am forever changed by what I saw, heard, and experienced in Perryville. There HAS to be a better way to deal with non-violent crimes and criminals that will enable them to return to society easily and seamlessly after prison. I hope everyone who sees “Orange is the New Black” stops and thinks about just how deep the rabbit hole of the prison industrial complex goes.

3. Submitted by Karen on 7/14/13.
My son told me yesterday that there are NO fans available in the unit where he is housed. He said there are fans on the ‘other side.’ With the current heat wave advisory; I believe it’s inhumane and cruel to house inmates 23 hours in a cell without adequate ventilation and cooling.

Response to question about visitation on 7/14/13
Hi Sandra,

Please note the following information about visitation:

How do I apply for visiting privileges?

If the inmate wants you to visit, he or she will send you a Form 19-127, “Request for Visiting Privileges.” Only inmates are authorized to provide an application. To apply for visiting privileges, you must FULLY complete the Form 19-27 that is provided to you by the inmate and return it by mail to the Division of Visitation and Inmate Drug Testing through the Central Visitation Center (CVC). The address for the CVC is located on the top right of the “Request for Visiting Privileges” form. If you should need additional Form 19-127s in the future, you may obtain them from the inmate you wish to visit.

If you do not provide all requested information, the form will be rejected. If the “Request for Visiting Privileges” cannot be processed because it is incomplete or because you have provided an incorrect inmate name or inmate number (the identification number assigned to the inmate by the South Carolina Department of Corrections), it will be returned to you, if the address on the form is complete. A parent, legal guardian, or other adult may assist a child in completing the form; however, only a parent or legal guardian will be permitted to sign this form.

Response to Amanda’s question about visitation on 7/14/13

Hi Amanda,

Please note the following information:

The main Denver Complex diagnostic intake units are temporary facility assignments which provide assessment and classification of all incoming offenders. During an offender’s brief incarceration at these processing units, only five (5) visitors, including children may be approved on an offenders visiting list. All visitors must apply for visiting privileges utilizing CDOC Form 300-01 Attachment “A”. Offenders are responsible for contacting their visitors and advising them of the hours and regulations regarding visiting days, special visits, and visiting status.

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Tamara Griffin

I left 2 question and comments for you on 08-04-13 concerning inmate #U34442, Amber Mckay. I know that You are very Busy, my email is [email protected] and I was hoping for a response, or if you already have, please let me know how to find your answer. THANK YOU & GOD BLESS YOU!