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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
2. Can I keep photographs of my family in my cell?Yes, you can have up to ten photographs that are 6" x 4" (15 x 10cm) in your cell. You may need to pin any photos you want on display in your cell to a notice board if it isavailable. If photos are mailed to you that do not conform to approved size they will be returned to sender or withheld, and will be returned to the prisoner or remandee, on request, upon release. Photographs that contain inappropriate content will also be held by the Security and intelligence Unit.
4. Do they do video phone calls in prison instead of in person calls to save family from travelling all the way?Video Visit can be requested when a visitor makes a visit bookings. The benefits of these visits are that they can be done from home, which is often much easier than travelling all the way to Hobart. Video Visits are often very convenient for children, and it MAY be possible to arrange visits during the week after school. (Depending on where you are housed in the prison).
1. How often can I make/receive calls every day?When you are in prison you will not be able to receive personal phone calls. Lawyers and other professionals on the outside will be able to book professional calls to you. You will be able to make phone calls to family and friends but will be limited to having five personal numbers, three legal numbers and two professional numbers (approved by the Prison) on your phone account at any one time. Shortly after coming into prison, you will be given opportunity to provide the phone numbers of people you would like to have added to your phone list. (It would be very helpful for you write down the phone number and bring them with you when you come into prison). There are a number of phones located throughout the prison but your access to a phone may be limited depending on where you are housed. You will normally be able to make phone calls between approximately 8am and 5pm depending on where you are housed. Phone calls are limited to 10minutes and will cost 36 cents per minute to mobiles or 25 cents per call to a landline in Tasmania. You are not normally limited in the number of phone calls you make but will be limited by access to phone and money in your phone account to pay for the calls. You are able to put money into your ‘phone account’ which will be debited as you make calls. This process on how to put money into your phone account will be explained to you when you get to the prison. Your family can put money into your account. This process will be explained to you.
6. I have very sensitive troubled skin (or medical condition) that needs special creams applied morning and night, will it be an issue to have my skincare?Make sure you bring photocopies of any medical prescriptions, your doctor’s information, and other relevant medical information with you. If you have any special medical conditions and are taking prescription medication you should bring the medication that you are currently taking with you. It would also be helpful to have a letter from your doctor relating to you medical condition. It can't be guaranteed that you will be allowed to continue with your medication however bringing it with you will allow the person who does your health induction at the prison to fully understand your circumstances. If the special cream or other medication is NOT prescription it is unlikely that you will be able to bring it into the prison.
3. How often will my children be able to visit me?Depending on the nature of your offences, it may be necessary for the prison to determine if there are any restriction around your contact with your children. If you have any restrictions on your contact this will have to be factored into any proposed visit arrangements and phone calls. Visits to the prison have been complicated during the COVID restrictions with all visits being conduced by zoom video visits. The day and time of visits will depend on where an inmate is located. Contact visits are normally conducted each day except for Tuesdays and Wednesdays. In RBP visits are every day. No visitors can enter the prison facility for a visit without being listed as an approved visitor. To have someone approved as a visitor, you must nominate them on a visitor form (you can nominate up to ten visitors). When you arrive at the prison you will be given opportunity to complete a Visitor Nomination Form. You will need the address of the people who are visiting. It will make it easier to complete this form if you bring details of the people you would like to have added to your visit list: Their name, address, phone number and email address. After you nominate who you would like as a visitor the Tasmania Prison Service (TPS) will send a Visitor Application form to those you nominate. Your visitor will need to complete and return the form to the prison. Adult visitors (over the age of 18) must have government approved photo ID). Children must be accompanied by an adult when they visit the prison, and the adult must prove they are the guardian/parent of the child. This is normally done through presentation of a Medicare card that lists the adult and child on the same card. For children accompany a person other than a parent or guardian a special Minor Visitor Authorisation (MVA) form must be completed and endorsed by a parent or guardian. The authorising parent or guardian cannot be incarcerated. This same process to approve visitors is required for both Contact Visit and Video Visits. Once people are approved to visit, they can ring the prison Visitor Reception Centre (VRC) and book a visit. Visit bookings can only be made a maximum of seven days in advance. Video Visits are for 30 minutes duration, and contact visits for 60 min. Assuming you are allowed contact with your children, and they are living with an approved visitor, you should be able to have video visits with them at least weekly.
5. Will the prisoners find out about my crime if I don't tell them? I'm terrified about my safety.Tasmania is a small place and in all probability the media and word of mouth may mean that people will eventually find out about your offence. It is wise to say very little if anything about your offence. Most inmates keep the nature of their offence private and you should be able to avoid talking about it with others.
7. I'm borderline diabetic and have a very strict diet. I cannot eat regular bread or foods that most people do. Everything has to be extremely low carb and low sugar.1. It is not uncommon for people to have similar conditions to those you mention. With care and discipline you should be able to manage your diet. However there are challenges. 2. If you would like to better understand the prison food situation the Custodial Inspector recently tabled a report on Food and Nutrition. This report was only recently tabled in parliament but was undertaken in 2020. It will give a good overview of what the independent inspector had to say about food. The prison has responded to many of the issues raised and addressed the areas where standards were not met.
Preparing for Prison
On the Inside
On the Outside
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