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BOP Leaving Huge Opportunity On The Table

In 2022 the BOP rolled out tablets with Keefe. Tablets are available to inmates for around $125 from commissary. The tablet is called the SCORE7c which stands for: Secure Commitment to Offender Rehabilitation and Reentry device, holds more mp3s than the mp3 player.

The SCORE7c allows inmates to play games, rent movies (by connected transfer) and listen to music, not much more than that.

It must be synced with a trulincs kiosk. During that transfer media purchased, including games, music and movie rentals, is securely moved from to the tablet. Every 14 days the inmate must “re-validate” whichhelps prevent theft. 

The security of the wired transfer is understood however a WiFi enabled tablet  would allow the tablets to provide more content and perhaps move into the mission of the name of the tablet.

The county jails I have been had tablets provided by GTL. These tablets allowed monitored and recorded phone calls and video visits directly on the tablet. Thus allowing for a private, yet securely monitored phone call and video visit. Many inmates get quite emotional on video visits with their significant other or their children. This privacy, in some facilities, allows the inmate to take that visit from the privacy of their own cell and still permits the security of monitoring and recording.

But let’s talk about rehabilitation and reducing recidivism. These same GTL tablets typically have the Kahn academy on them.  Kahn offers virtual instructed, courses. Continuing education reduces recidivism. 

In addition, a studio at BOP headquarters in DC would allow Director Peters to send word to inmates via videos.  One  hired hand in the BOP could easily, virtually,  teach any of the First Step Act programs via video. There is a widespread problem, where institutions are unable to provide all of the programs  found in the monthly “FSA Programming Guide”.  With one person creating video classes and  tests, BOP could insure that all inmates had access to the content . As for inmates that don’t have tablets they could “borrow” them in education to complete courses. For inmate accountability and Bureau accountability producing (in 2024) virtual classes and tests would allow BOP to give accurate numbers to Congress as to how many inmates are not just completing  the courses but absorbing them. 

Seems easy enough right?  Wrong! No BOP facility allows WiFi for inmates.  Even with no WiFi, cellphones still make it in and mobile data is still a thing.  Just  because you have WiFi does not mean you have internet the WiFi LAN for tablets could be completely off the internet thus eliminating that particular concern.

Keefe and the BOP named the tablets Secure Commitment to Offender Rehabilitation and Re-Entry devices, yet the fear of WiFi prevents the BOP from achieving that mission.