Sunday, March 1, 2015

Day 67 (11/28/14) Phones and Video Visit Ripoff

Happy Black Friday. It’s 4am and while all the shoppers are out and about, we are having breakfast in our cells. As we are still on lockdown. This lockdown and being understaffed really sucks. I hope I am not here (Las Colinas) for Christmas. Even the girls who had video visits scheduled last night on Thanksgiving, they got cancelled. They wouldn't even let them out of their cell for a 30 minute video visit. That was a little extreme. You don’t even leave the housing unit. Both of the women that had video visits have family that are out of town that had paid for their video visits already. Now they have to try and get are refund from the company. Good luck with that. Securus, the company they use for the video visits and phones are horrible and totally rob inmates and their families blind. I guarantee the fine print says there are no refunds for cancelled video visits. So, you’re out of your $19.95. Also, all the money you have on your phone account when you’re released is non-refundable. That is ridiculous and down right criminal. So, if your family puts $50 on your phone account and you have $40 left when you leave, Securus keeps every dime. Then, the worst scam is the phones “reset”. You are on the phone and all of a sudden the phones shutoff and you have to wait for them to reset. Once they reset, you call back and get charged your $.60 for the first minute. So, you’re getting double charged. Local calls are $.60 for the first minute and $.25 every minute after. This happens multiple times a day. They are making a killing just on the “resetting” of the phones. Your max time for one phone call is 30 minutes, which is $7.85 per phone call. There have been numerous complaints about the time calculated on the phone for inmates. I believe I have been overcharged numerous times and there is no way to get a copy of your calls and charges. That is not right at all. I have requested copies, my Sister has gone to their website to request it, but nothing. I’ve even asked the jail to provide me a copy of my phone records and they just ignored my request. It’s not right, you should be able to get a copy of what you are paying for. Date, time, phone number called, how many minutes, charge per minute, and total billed. All the calls are recorded, so it’s possible to get records. It’s a phone company and service the jail uses, as a private phone company, you have to be required to provide billing information to your customers. Just because we are in jail, they take full advantage to overcharge and rip us (and our families) off, because we have no options. When I get home, I’ll be looking into this much deeper. 
Friday was very uneventful and boring. We were at least back to full staff and our regular program, no more lockdown. I am tired of being so bored. I really need more to do with my time. I am up at 6:30am and go to bed at 10:30pm. That’s 15.5 hours to occupy and my options are slim on what I can do. Another day down. 

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