Virginia Beach Jail Offers Tablets, Web Visits
Inmates at the Virginia Beach Correctional Center now have access to secure tablets, opening the door to a wide range of services, including web-based visits with their friends and family from anywhere in the world.
During the past six months, contractor GTL installed 250 secure, correctional-grade tablets, docking stations and other related infrastructure throughout the Virginia Beach Correctional Center, which houses 1,400 inmates in 77 housing units. The tablets were provided at no cost to taxpayers under a five-year initial contract with GTL.
The tablets went live on Jan. 24 and there have since been approximately 2,000 web visits and 17,000 messages shared. Due to the number of inmates, staffing and the size of the Correctional Center, general population inmates were previously limited to one 25-minute visit per week. Visitors were required to schedule visits and come to the jail. Now visits can take place on-demand as frequently as visitors choose and from anywhere in the world via any web-enabled device.
In addition to communications tools, the tablets provide educational and entertainment resources, including books, movies, music, games, news and the ability to order Canteen items and Fresh Favorites meals. The tablets eventually will be integrated into the jail’s Offender Management System, enabling inmates to electronically submit paperwork, such as requests for medical care and grievances.
The cost to use the tablets starts at 3 cents per minute. Web visits are 25 cents per minute. On-site visits remain free. Revenue from the tablets is divided between GTL and the Virginia Beach Sheriff’s Office.
“These tablets are an innovative tool for improving communication between inmates and their loved ones, which we know is important for morale and rehabilitation. Most of our inmates will be returning to the community and they will be more successful if they’ve maintained their family connections during their incarceration. The tablets also provide offenders with productive ways to use their time, which improves the safety and security of the jail,” said Sheriff Ken Stolle. “In addition, these tablets help bring the jail into the 21st Century without burdening taxpayers with any additional expense.”
Additional information on the tablets is available at www.gtl.net. Additional information on how to create an account and communicate with an inmate is available at www.gettingout.com and via the GettingOut app.
If you have any questions or require additional information, please contact: Kathy Hieatt, Public Information Officer: 757.385.8446.