Internet Video Technology Changes Visitation at Alachua County Jail

GTN News, Gainesville, FL

The Alachua County Jail in Gainesville, Florida has been using Renovo Software's video visitation system since 2009. Soon, they will continue the expansion of their visitation technologies to allow public and professional visitors to have visitations over the internet.

When the system was initially launched, it was used to give visitors an online website to register for and schedule traditional, on-site inmate visitations. At the same time, the system saved jail staff time and streamlined the process by automatically taking inmate location, restrictions, hours, facility policies, and station availability into account.

Since then, Alachua County has slowly expanded the system by installing video visitation stations in select inmate housing units. Video visitation further increases efficiency by eliminating the need to escort inmates to and from traditional visits. In addition, this increases safety and eliminates contraband entering the jail with visitors.

Alachua has now expanded the use of on-site video visitation to include most of the jail, and will soon allow friends, loved ones, attorneys, and other professional visitors to visit inmates online. Internet video visits will be offered for free through December 31st, 2013. On-site visits will remain free, and starting in January of 2014, visitors will be able to purchase a 20 minute at-home visit for eight dollars. Visitors can register, schedule, and visit online at http://jailvisitation.alachuasheriff.org/

"There'll be hopefully less people waiting in the lobby to do visitation. So, it will free up those people from sitting and waiting for it and they'll be able to do it in the comfort of their own home," said Alachua Sheriff's Office spokesperson Art Forgey.

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