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County jail books video visitations


The Washington County Jail now allows inmate visits to be conducted online. The jail has added 21 durable touchscreen video kiosks, at no cost to the county. They are paid for by Telmate, the inmate phone service provider, which will also provide free software upgrades, Internet service and lifetime on-site service and maintenance.

The cost of a video visit will be $9.90 for each 30-minute call, regardless of whether it is scheduled by the inmate or the visitor. The person who schedules the visits pays the fee. The fees are the same for local, long distance and international calls.

The new system will allow family and friends to visit an inmate via a video call, similar to Skype. Visitors with Internet access, a desk or laptop computer, and a webcam can communicate directly with inmates without having to travel to the jail. This will save time and expense for visitors who live far away, disabled visitors, and those who may be too ill to travel.

Potential visitors can create an account and request authorization to visit an image online at telmate. com. Visits must still be authorized according to jail policies, and all video visits will be monitored for compliance with rules. Inmates will be allowed to schedule visits with authorized persons as long as they have funds in their accounts.

With traditional in-person visits, inmates are allowed two one-hour visits per week in a visiting booth during set hours. With video visits, inmates will be allowed an unlimited number of visits each week to the extent appointments are available. Video visits are allowed during normal visiting hours, plus on Fridays and Mondays.