Chapter 10.5. Prison Visitor Services of California Penal Code >> Title 7. >> Part 3. >> Chapter 10.5.
The Legislature finds and declares the following:
(a) Maintaining an inmate's family and community relationships is
an effective correctional technique which reduces recidivism.
(b) Enhancing visitor services increases the frequency and quality
of visits, thereby discouraging violent prisoner activity.
(c) The location of prisons and lack of services to assist
visitors impedes visiting.
The Department of Corrections shall contract with a private
nonprofit agency or agencies to establish and operate a visitor
center outside each state adult prison in California which has a
population of more than 300 inmates.
Each visitor center shall provide, at a minimum, each of the
following services to prison visitors:
(a) Assistance to visitors with transportation between public
transit terminals and prisons.
(b) Child care for visitors' children.
(c) Emergency clothing.
(d) Information on visiting regulations and processes.
(e) Referral to other agencies and services.
(f) A sheltered area, which is outside of the security perimeter,
for visitors who are waiting before or after visits.
In addition, each center shall maintain working relations with the
local community and institution.
Each nonprofit agency which the department contracts with
pursuant to Section 6351 shall submit to the department and to the
Legislature an annual report which includes, but is not limited to,
the following information:
(a) A description of the barriers to visiting.
(b) A quantitative and narrative description of the services which
(c) A description of the impact of the centers which it provided
(d) A description of areas for improvement of services or
coordination with other public or private agencies.
(e) A description of the community resources which it utilized.
The Department of Corrections shall employ all the following
criteria in selecting the agency or agencies with which it contracts
pursuant to Section 6351:
(a) The number and quality of services proposed in comparison to
direct program costs.
(b) Prior experience in establishing and operating prison visitor
service centers in California.
(c) Prior experience in working cooperatively with the department,
other correctional agencies, community programs, inmates, visitors,
and the general public.
(d) The ability to use volunteers and other community resources to
maximize the cost effectiveness of this program.
(e) The identified needs of visitors.
Nothing in this chapter is intended to limit the department
in developing additional programs or making all reasonable efforts to
promote visits to prisoners.
The department shall cooperate with the Department of
Transportation in the development of public transportation services
to prisons, pursuant to Section 14035.9 of the Government Code and
Section 99317.9 of the Public Utilities Code.