Media Coverage

EDWINS goes nationwide in teaching prison inmates culinary skills via video tablets

The Land – July 27, 2021

Chef Brandon Chrostowski, founder of EDWINS Leadership and Restaurant Institute, faced a dilemma. When the coronavirus pandemic hit, closing prisons to outsiders, he needed a way to continue leading his successful restaurant and hospitality courses among incarcerated adults in 12 area facilities. His solution? Technology. Continue Reading

Mecklenburg County inmates given tablets, can message family, listen to music and watch movies

WCNC – June 22, 2021

As the coronavirus pandemic forced the world to go virtual, Mecklenburg County Sheriff Garry McFadden saw an opportunity for inmates awaiting trial to stay connected to the outside world. The jail has made it possible for inmates to make calls, message their families, read books, continue their education, plan for future careers, listen to music, and even watch movies using a new tablet program. Continue Reading

Edwins Leadership and Restaurant Institute sees huge enrollment increase, expands with prison tablets

19 News – June 11, 2021

Setting up those formerly incarcerated for success is the mission of Edwin’s Leadership and Restaurant Institute. They’ve been doing so well spreading their message and reducing recidivism that enrollment in their hospitality program has increased by 60 percent in the midst of a pandemic that crushed that industry. Even as restaurants were closing left and right, new students at Edwin’s Leadership and Restaurant Institute chose to enter the restaurant industry. Continue Reading

Tablets will help prepare Lebanon County Prison inmates to re-enter society

Lebtown – May 21, 2021

The county commissioners entered into an agreement Thursday to provide cost-free tablets to inmates at the county prison as a way to help them prepare to re-enter society. The tablets, which come at no cost to taxpayers or the inmates, will be donated by GTL, who is the existing provider for Lebanon County Prison and the largest provider of inmate telephone services in the nation. Continue Reading

Video calls offered in Henrico jails after COVID-19 affected in-person visitation

ABC8 News – April 29, 2021

Inmates in Henrico County Jail were able to meet in-person with family and friends before COVID-19 halted visitation last March. Safety protocols have limited inmates to telephone calls during the last year, according to Henrico County. Now, inmates are getting an upgrade to video calls. Through a comprehensive jail services contract with Global Tel Link [GTL] — Henrico’s Sheriff’s Office was able to receive 70 multimedia tablets that were designed to be used in correctional facilities. Continue Reading

Expanded opportunities underway to visit loved ones housed at the St. Lucie County Jail

TCPalm – April 21, 2021

Opportunities to visit friends or loved ones incarcerated at the St. Lucie County Jail will be expanded after a new visitation center is completed, officials said Wednesday. Sheriff Ken Mascara and others Wednesday discussed the new, 7,200-square-foot facility which is expected to be complete in November. Continue Reading

Va. DOC Inmates Have Held More Than 144K Video Visits Since Start of Pandemic

WBOC – April 14, 2021

Inmates housed in Virginia’s state prisons and institutions stayed connected with friends and family through video visitation while the Virginia Department of Corrections, along with the Commonwealth of Virginia and the rest of the country, took measures to mitigate the spread of the novel coronavirus more than a year ago. Continue Reading

Tablet mail to aid in stopping influx of drugs into jail

Hood County News – April 12, 2021

Inmates have been sneaking in drugs to the Hood County Jail through the mail, according to Hood County Sheriff Roger Deeds. With visitation to the jail temporarily restricted due to COVID-19 restrictions, Deeds said they recently discovered that letters soaked in liquid infused with methamphetamine have been getting past the guards. Continue Reading

Jails offer video calls to inmates after COVID-19 halts in-person visitation

HenricoNews – March 31, 2021

Henrico County jail inmates were meeting in person with family and friends an average of 100 times per day before sweeping measures to contain the coronavirus abruptly ended the visitations last March. While safety protocols have largely limited them to telephone calls during the past year, inmates are now getting a better option to stay in touch with loved ones – video calls. Continue Reading

Michigan prison system to resume in-person visits March 26: How they’ll be different

The Sault News – March 15, 2021

After a year of no in-person connection because of the coronavirus pandemic, Michigan prisoners and their loved ones will be allowed to resume visits later this month. But the process will look different as the Michigan Department of Corrections implements precautions to try to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Continue Reading

Virtual visits to roll out in SC prisons after a year of no in-person visits

ABC4 News – March 12, 2021

Incarcerated? Yes. Completely cut off from family and friends on the outside? Not anymore. There’s a new way for people to virtually visit with South Carolina inmates. Continue Reading

 10 Weekly Highlights from CDCR’s COVID Crisis: Decrease in GTL Costs to Save Families $17m per Year & More

The Davis Vanguard – March 8, 2021

As of Mar. 5, there have been a total of 49,150 confirmed COVID-19 cases in the CDCR system – 175 of them emerged in the last two weeks. 197 cases are active in custody while 614 have been released while active. A total of 48,127 confirmed cases have been resolved since the start of the pandemic. Continue Reading

Cal. State Prisoners Get iPads

Culver City Observer – March 4, 2021

That’s right. Jpay is out as the prisoner email provider! A brand new deal between CDCR and https://www.gtl.net is in place and signed. This will widely expand the tablet program, allowing the use of inmate tablets and email service for ALL prisoners in every state prison and fire camp in California! Starting in April, each state prisoner will begin receiving their new, free tablet from gtl.net! Presently, only 6 prisons in the state have tablets! Now all prisons and fire camps will have it. Continue Reading

California Prisoners To Get Reduced Phone, Communication Rates This Month

California Globe – March 2, 2021

On Monday, the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) announced that the cost for prisoners to make telephone calls would be greatly reduced in 2021. According to a CDCR press release, a new six-year contract with Global Tel Link Corporation (GTL), all calls nationwide from prison will now be 2.5 cents a minute. The new rate will reduce local and in-California calls by 5.1 cents a minute and 18.5 cents a minute outside of California. International calls were also greatly reduced, going down 68 cents a minute to a now flat rate of 7 cents a minute. Continue Reading

California prison phone rates to fall under new contract with vendor

The Orange County Register – March 1, 2021

Inmates at California state prisons will save $17 million a year on telephone calls under the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation’s new contract with its phone vendor. The six-year contract with GTL sets rates at 2.5 cents per minute for all calls, a reduction of 5.1 cents for in-state calls and a reduction of 18.5 cents per minute for calls outside California, said a news release Monday. Continue Reading

Raising opportunity; Okra, bees and GED among new programs at JC Jail

Cleburne Times Review – February 14, 2021

What began as a wish on Johnson County Sheriff Adam King’s part to develop productive activities for Johnson County Jail inmates soon grew into an abundance of opportunity with more to come. From a fiscal point of view, the programs fund themselves without reliance on taxpayer dollars. For participating inmates they offer a possible fresh start and, King and others hope, stepping stones toward a more positive way of life. Continue Reading

New app to help California family, friends schedule video visits with inmates at 4 state prisons

KTLA5 – January 16, 2021

The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation has announced a new tool to help friends and family visit inmates. The Visitation Scheduling Application app can be accessed on smartphones, tablets and computers and allows approved visitors to easily schedule their own video visits and receive instant confirmation. Continue Reading

York County Prison may reduce inmates’ phone call costs

York Dispatch – January 14, 2021

The cost for inmates to make phone calls at York County Prison would decrease under a proposed new contract with Global Tel Link, the company that provides tablet and phone services to the prison, officials said Wednesday. Continue Reading

Where Are They Now: Deb Alderson in 2021

Washington Exec – January 10, 2021

Deb Alderson is on a mission to improve her own industry as she leads GTL from the CEO suite. Alderson, who spent decades in government contracting, has been at the helm of the communications technology firm for nearly 2 years, working to drive down costs, double down on efforts to connect incarcerated individuals with family and friends on the outside, and create a safer environment for law enforcement by leveraging the company’s proprietary technology solutions. Continue Reading

With in-person visits halted, Luzerne County will offer video chats to inmates

Times Leader – January 3, 2021

Luzerne County’s prison system has started implementing a new program that allows inmates to virtually visit friends and family members through video using computer tablets. Continue Reading