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Pennsylvania Visitation, Prison Phones, Packages & Mail Topics / Information relating to the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections and local / county Jail visitation, phone calls, mail, inmate care packages, etc.

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  #1  
Old 09-16-2018, 12:00 PM
Llama1176 Llama1176 is offline
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Default Female Visitors Denied Visitation

Hi,

I am looking for any females who have been denied visitation at any PA DOC facility after the recent lockdown AND were following the dress code as posted on the DOC website.

I was denied entry at SCI Waymart for failure to clear the new metal detector. I was wearing the same jeans I wore at last visit (8/12/18) and previous visits as well as the same bra (no underwire, but has metal hook eye closure as most bras contain). The guard explained that no metal of any kind will clear (again, no dress code policy updated on website-all it states is that females must wear a bra and that bra must not be underwire) and that visitors should wear sweats/yoga pants, etc. He also stated they have turned away approximately half of all females visitors within this past week.
Additionally I witnessed an employee going through a separate metal detector with visible metal jewelry and was advised by same guard that employees are NOT being screened at the same level as visitors and inmates.

If you have had this happen to you, please let me know. I am contacting an attorney to discuss potential discrimination tactics by the DOC.

Last edited by Llama1176; 09-16-2018 at 12:12 PM..
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Old 09-16-2018, 01:03 PM
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You've been denied 1 time at 1 facility? The guard's comments are hearsay & will denied if interviewed.

I wish you lots of luck, but personally, I think you may be peeing in the wind....especially after all the incidents of inmates and employees both becoming sick due to contraband.
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Old 09-16-2018, 01:18 PM
Llama1176 Llama1176 is offline
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15 visits prior to lockdown, same jeans and same bra worn and not one problem clearing metal detector. I purposely wear these two items to avoid issues.

I drive 3 hours one way to visit; I checked the DOC website and the FB page for any changes in rules/dress code prior to my visit. Nothing is indicated that jeans and/or non under wire bras were prohibited.

But you're right it hasn't happened to anyone else and I should roll over and play dead. The DOC needs to be he accountable in communicating with the public.
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Old 09-16-2018, 01:37 PM
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I didn't say you shouldn't be angry and/or upset or that you should "roll over and play dead." And I didn't say that it hadn't happened to anyone else. Reading Comprehension 101

There have been changes implemented by PA DOC since the lockdown, but I haven't kept up with all the nuts & bolts of it. Here is a thread that you may have overlooked:

All State Prison Lockdown-Major Changes to Mail/Visiting/Publications

Its in this forum's (Pennsylvania) sub-forum for Pennsylvania Visitation, Prison Phones, Packages & Mail, which is where I'll move this thread to since its about Visitation & Visitation policies.
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Old 09-16-2018, 01:38 PM
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How many others did you see get denied while you were there? If it said to wear sweats or yoga pants, what reasoning did you use to choose jeans instead? Assuming, of course, that “it’s always gotten in before” is not a valid argument because the rules changed on September 5.

I hope you get what you want, but facilities pretty much have carte blanche when it comes to visiting and who they let it. They don’t have to allow visits. They don’t have to allow contact visits. Neither you nor the inmate is guaranteed, entitled to, or obligated to receive a visit.

Good luck to you.
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Old 09-16-2018, 01:45 PM
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Visiting isnt a legal right, there is no law that says you have to be allowed visits. The DOC can deny anyone for pretty much any reason if they say its for security. You tripping the metal detector makes you a risk in their view

Try wearing what they suggest in the visiting instructions and see how you get on. I make sure my visiting bras have no metal. I cut out the hooks at the back and sew up the bra so I can just pull it on.

You can hire an attorney if you want but you can't make the DOC give you a visit if you dont pass their security checks for whatever reason.
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Old 09-16-2018, 02:01 PM
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And I'll say it again...the PA DOC website does not indicate any changes to the dress code. None of the press releases address a change in dress code. Believe me this is NOT something I would overlook given the distance from my home to the facility.
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Old 09-16-2018, 02:15 PM
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"You can hire an attorney if you want............"

IF she can find one to take the case. Lawyers don't like taking cases that might not win.
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Old 09-16-2018, 02:38 PM
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Well your "normal" visiting outfit no longer appears to be suitable, so time for a change. Or an expensive law suit that you are very unlikely to win.
Whats more important you making a point or trying to? and you seeing your loved one?
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Old 09-17-2018, 01:53 PM
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I'm so sorry this happened to you Llama! : ( Ugh! I know that feeling-I always wear the same things that have cleared before..BUT at my last visit this didn't work out, (it was BEFORE the lock down). I'm glad you said something here tho bc I'm planning a visit very soon (to SCI Coal Twnshp) and I was concerned about not being able to make it thru with my regular jeans on. I would hope the tiny metal clasps on the bra wouldn't set off the metal detector too?? gee whiz...I really am sorry you had to go thru this! I will def take a change of clothes w/ me like always and be mindful of this! Thank you for posting!!
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Old 09-17-2018, 02:15 PM
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Sport bras help for those worried.
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Old 09-17-2018, 02:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Llama1176 View Post
And I'll say it again...the PA DOC website does not indicate any changes to the dress code. None of the press releases address a change in dress code. Believe me this is NOT something I would overlook given the distance from my home to the facility.
They don't have to change the dress code if it also states that you must be able to pass the metal detector. We have no rule against bra hooks or jeans in California, but we must be able to pass the metal detector. I clip the hooks off my bra and stitch it closed and make sure my jeans don't have metal.

BTW...are you only seeking female accounts? Men's pants and shirts also have metal that may not be explicitly forbidden but I'm assuming they go through the same detection system.
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Old 09-18-2018, 08:53 AM
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[quote=miamac;7744936]They don't have to change the dress code if it also states that you must be able to pass the metal detector. We have no rule against bra hooks or jeans in California, but we must be able to pass the metal detector. I clip the hooks off my bra and stitch it closed and make sure my jeans don't have metal.

I never thought to do that with a bra or two-what a great idea! thanks for sharing! : )
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Old 09-18-2018, 11:11 AM
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I have visit bras that I cut the wire out of and I snip the hooks off and sew the straps up. That way no metal and you don't have to buy a sports bra which can be unflattering and expensive.
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Old 09-18-2018, 11:54 AM
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Maybe a stupid question... people focus on the tiny hooks on bras, but arent the zippers/buttons on jeans also metal?
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Old 09-18-2018, 12:18 PM
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Quote:
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Maybe a stupid question... people focus on the tiny hooks on bras, but arent the zippers/buttons on jeans also metal?
Iím assuming thatís why the jeans didnít pass and they suggested sweats or yoga pants.
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Old 09-18-2018, 12:20 PM
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Yeah jeans do have metal zips , buttons and trim and which is why the prison is recommending wearing sweat pants that dont have metal.
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Old 09-18-2018, 02:16 PM
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Iím assuming thatís why the jeans didnít pass and they suggested sweats or yoga pants.
Can't wear yoga pants, or any very tight, clothing in FL. I am having issues with the static scanners...and can't figure out why.
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Old 09-23-2018, 06:11 AM
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Just an FYI: The DOC has been replacing their metal detectors statewide, and this began prior to the lockdown. It was a scheduled upgrade. I saw the new one at Chester in August and it was much more sensitive. Staff also had to pass through it and even they were having trouble (lots of metal on their uniforms.)

I could see that the hardware on bras was setting the detector off. One trick was that women would hold their hand over the metal pieces if they could.

Not all trousers have metal zippers. Some zippers are made of nylon and the slider is a non-magnetic alloy.

Some officers will resort to a hand scanner (wand), but this is discouraged because those trying to smuggle items in know that they should hide them where "acceptable" metal would be found. You'd be surprised:

Someone claiming he had a pin in his ankle happened to have contraband inside his sock. It was discovered when they made him slide his trousers up and roll down the sock. So a wand that activates when passed over a bra or zipper leaves them no choice because they aren't going to perform a strip search.

This is a very difficult issue and it will take some time before the situation cools down a bit. All facilities have to log every visitor, including those who were declined and the reason. As the statistics accumulate, things will be adjusted.
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