NYC becomes 1st major US city to make jail phone calls free

Posted at 2:21 PM, May 01, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-01 14:21:43-04

NEW YORK (AP) — New York has become the first major city in the U.S. to offer free phone calls from jails.

Mayor Bill de Blasio said Wednesday that the city has fully implemented a law passed by the City Council last August to eliminate fees for inmate phone calls.

The Democratic mayor says the free calls will help people in custody stay connected to their lawyers, families and support networks.

City jail inmates were previously charged 50 cents for the first minute of a phone call and 5 cents per additional minute.

Lawmakers in Connecticut are considering a bill to provide free calling for inmates in the state's prison system. Connecticut would be to first state to make prison calls free if the measure goes into effect.