Securus, a billion-dollar tech company that contracts with hundreds of jails and prisons around the United States, will no longer require the prisons it works with to eliminate in-person visitations for inmates and their families in favor of paid video visits, reports the International Business Times. The decision follows a backlash after an IBT story detailed how Dallas-based Securus had entered into contracts with about 100 jails and prisons in multiple states that effectively required the facilities to remove in-person family visitations for inmates.
In the past year, three lawsuits against Securus have challenged the elimination of in-person visits in favor of video visits, which cost as much as $20 for a 20-minute video call. In a statement this week, Securus said it has amended its contract requirements that banned “person-to-person contact” and will defer to the rules of each prison or jail. “Good news, though it should've always been this way,” Bernadette Rabuy of the Prison Policy Initiative said on Twitter.