Washington, D.C., of counsel Lee Petro  was noted in the Washington Post in an article titled, “After Almost a Decade, FCC has yet to Rule on High Cost of Prison Phone Calls.”

Lee works with the Washington Lawyers Committee and the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights to represent Martha Wright before the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). The action challenges exorbitantly expensive telephone service rates for the incarcerated.

The original petition arrived at the FCC almost 10 years ago and has still not been ruled on. There is no is no timetable for when the FCC must decide.

Securus, a Dallas-based company that offers phone service to 2,200 facilities in 44 states, said the high cost of calls can be explained by the price of the technology required to monitor phone calls, as well as related research and development.

Lee, however, disagreed and said that the telephone equipment that companies use in jails is standard

The real explanation is the commissions that go to state and county governments, also known as “kickbacks,” that can generate significant income for states.

Inmate advocates say the Wright petition is a familiar quest in a country that isn’t sympathetic about prisoners’ rights and emphasizes punishment over rehabilitation for those who commit crimes.

To read the entire article, click here.     

The case was also the subject of an article in The Atlantic. To read that article, click here.