Updated: Nov 3, 2021
I have been incarcerated since October 7th 2020. As of this writing October 25th 2021 the last I saw my parents was through a 10 minute video visit, in mid-april, and county jail. the last I saw my younger sisters was on October 7th 2020.
visitations are ideally supposed to allow an inmate to ability to remain in contact with friends and family in a way that a 10 minute phone call just cannot provide. the ability to see my family was something that I took for granted on the outside, especially since I still lived with them. Nowadays, I long for the next time I can see them, but that won't happen for at minimum another month or two, just do to the simple fact that they live out of state in Kentucky while I'm here in Virginia. Is a 10-hour one-way trip to drive out to see me, which necessitates planning on driving here, spending the night in a hotel, seeing me in the morning, and then driving back home. Currently, each unit gets 2 days a month, on a Saturday or sunday, to have visits. These days are random, so one month's rotation doesn't mean the next.
as someone who has experienced suicidal ideation and attempted it in the past, the ability to see my family, my support group, to talk about my well-being face to face, to let them physically see that I'm doing okay, is something that I am forced to wait on. The cares act is supposed to provide us inmates with the video visits similar to what I used in county jail. My question is: where is it? surely I'm not the only inmate whose family needs to go to extraordinary measures just to see each other. And while an in-person visit would be best, I'll settle for zoom session.
Written by Matthew P.
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