“Family Connect” initiative allows contact while aiming to reduce contraband on prison

(HMP): The introduction of “Family Connect” into the confines Her Majesty’s Prison in St. Kitts and Nevis is a clear demonstration of the continued commitment towards the wholesome rehabilitation of residents within the system.

“Family Connect” is a telephone system designated specifically for the use of the residents to stay connected to their family. The initiative is at no cost to the Prison Service and is partnership with a local telecoms provider. Superintendent of Prisons Mr. Junie Hodge said, “it is clear that when the residents are in contact with those who can support them in terms of positive encouragement and have regular contact with family, they are more responsive to the rehabilitation process.”

He added, “this regular connection also benefits the entire family.”

“Family Connect” provides residents with the opportunity to make outgoing calls to their families on a daily basis between the hours of 8.00am to 5.00pm. Residents must have available phone credit on their account in order to use the system. The residents must also provide a listing of up to five (5) pre-approved numbers for family members they would like to call. Twelve (12) wall mounted phones have been placed in the recreation yard and in other common areas for their use.

Assistant Superintendent of Prisons, Mr. Alton Liburd welcomes the initiative and said, “from a security point of view, I hope this can reduce the temptation for family members of trying to introduce contraband (cellphones) into the prison.” He added, “I look forward to seeing positive changes in attitudes, with the frequent contact between residents and family.”

In preparation for the launch of the program in coming weeks, residents are being briefed on their expectations for use of the system.

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