CenturyLink, the jail’s phone service vendor is paying for the calls. Normally it costs inmates about $1.30 to make a five-minute call.
“They made a mistake. They’re here, they may have done something horrifically wrong, but I want to see lives changed, I want to see the direction of their lives change, and this is just a little teeny tool that might help accomplish that,” said Sheriff Richard Schmidt with the Milwaukee County Sheriffs Office.
Organizers with non-profit, Citizen Action of Wisconsin, told us they asked CenturyLink to bear the cost of the calls. The group said the vendor was hesitant at first thinking inmates would use the free calls to contact victims of a crime. The non-profit said CenturyLink eventually agreed.