Family and family visiting are essential to the rehabilitation of each prisoner held in CDCR. How so? It allows the prisoner to reconnect with one’s family (children, parents, spouses, etc.) and it is inside these relationships, that the prisoners develop socially, by learning to and having to be responsible within their family setting.
Family visits: Should be valued by the prisoners and its captors, because the process is rooted in the social development of the family. After a prisoner has been restricted, denied, and punished for such an extended period of time (i.e. 10 years or more), to be given the opportunity to reconnect and integrate with family is a proven way to show that a prisoner has become responsible and accountable. Also, this core pertinent social development - when cultivated by family, prisoner/prisoner supporters, CDCR - supports a positive productive mentality, as well as behavior that further extends to the community and beyond.
Family visits: The prisoner will begin to understand his/her overall role inside of society, based on it’s relationship with his/her family whereas one’s humanity will begin to come alive and grow in one’s environment (prisons), then further extended community and beyond.
Family visits: In a very significant way, are the only “human factor” in association with prisons. Although one would never negate the irresponsible behavior that led to many prisoners to violate the law, it is devastating to countless communities to massively incarcerate humans in such an environment of seclusive isolation. Leaving behind fatherless/motherless dysfunctional households, where as if he/she is ever to return or be a part of the family again, one lacks the experience in social tools family visits give that family, community society etc.… In a significant way “family visits/visitation” allow prisoners to reclaim their humanity and through that process become responsible/accountable for thought and behavior.
Conflict of interest: we are seeing clearly now corporations such as Global Tel Link (GTL) has given CDCR $17 million. This money has allowed GTL to dictate harsh policies, that is designed to attack prisoner’s families… (See “Notice of Change to Regulations Section 3177/3315 Dec. 29th, 2017). In CDCR’s attempt to satisfy the demands of GTL, it has introduced policies to punish prisoners, who get caught with cell phones by suspending their family visits, which have no relations to cell phones; yet due to GTL losing money to cell phones, they have put their money behind influencing CDCR’s policy. We (prisoners) believe that, not only is this a conflict of interest, but, GTL has only one interest – profits. Whereas prisoners’ families are paying extremely excessive costs for collect calls through GTL and the families can’t afford it. GTL is attempting to buy CDCR so that they can continue to exploit prisoners and their families. Therefore, this regulation should be rejected, because it has nothing to do with policy, but everything to do with exploitation.