26 September 2023

Bars raised for online prison visits

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Queensland Corrective Services (QCS) has launched a new virtual personal visits program to keep prisoners in contact with family and friends during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The move follows the decision in March to suspend all personal face-to-face visits to prisons in Queensland to reduce the risk of the virus entering Correctional Centres.

Commissioner for Queensland Corrective Services, Peter Martin (pictured) said that as a result, QCS fast-tracked a pilot program using video conferencing technology trialled at the Brisbane Women’s Correctional Centre.

The program was now being rolled out State-wide.

“The program gives prisoners access to computer terminals in prisons and they can speak via video link to their family and friends while they are unable to receive visitors,” Commissioner Martin said.

“It is the quick, innovative thinking of officers that has allowed the program to roll out so quickly.”

He said his officers had worked tirelessly to get programs like virtual personal visits operating in an expedient manner.

“We understand that prisoners and families have been anxious since face-to-face visits were suspended, and we now have the ability to provide access to video conferencing facilities, which provides families with another channel to keep in touch until the pandemic restrictions ease,” Commissioner Martin said.

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