- Associated Press - Monday, June 15, 2015

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. (AP) - Video kiosks are being setting up in West Virginia’s regional jails to allow visitations with inmates without going to the facilities.

The new video visitations are being offered at the Central Regional Jail in Braxton County and the Western Regional Jail in Cabell County. Video kiosks are expected to be operational in the other regional jails by the end of the summer, Department of Military Affairs and Public Safety spokesman Lawrence Messina told The Dominion Post (https://bit.ly/1TntmE6 ).

Jails will continue to offer face-to-face visits with inmates.

“The video visitation is to give the family and friends another option in visiting their inmate. Face-to-face visits will stay on the schedules as well,” Messina said.

Family or friends can use video visitation from any device that has a video connection and a secure Web browser. There will be a $1 per minute charge to visit with inmates, with a limit of 15 minutes.

“This is a cost, but we hope that it is less costly than having to drive to the jail,” Messina said.

Jails will schedule video visitations at a time when the inmate is out of his or her cell, typically from 6 a.m. to 11 a.m.

Inmates benefit from visitations, said Brian Sharp, a psychologist and director of Clinical Services at Valley Healthcare System.

“People are social by nature and contacts with their primary attachment figures is a key to their adjustment in general,” Sharp told the newspaper.

People have a greater need when they are distress for loved ones to help them cope, he said.


Information from: The Dominion Post, https://www.dominionpost.com

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