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FCC Adopts Rules to Facilitate Inmate Calling Services by Inmates with Communications Disabilities
November 9, 2015
Source: Federal Communications Commission (FCC)
On November 5, 2015, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) released an Order addressing rates for telecommunications services by inmates. Specifically, the Order does the following:
- sets caps on rates charged by inmate calling services,
- requires providers to offer free access to TRS calls for inmates with communications disabilities,
- applies a steeply discounted rate for TTY-to-TTY calls,
- reminds correctional institutions of their obligation to make TRS available to people with communications disabilities, and
- encourages jails and prisons to allow commonly used forms of TRS and requires them to report complaints on service quality issues to the FCC.
The new rates take effect 90 days after publication in the Federal Register for prisons, and 6 months after publication in the Federal Register for jails. The FCC is committed to closely monitoring the implementation of reforms, including a review in two years to determine if additional adjustments are required.
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