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Office of Program Policy Analysis and Government Accountability

Corrections’ Contraband Effort Is Sound; Cell Phone Penalties and Warden Consistency Are Needed, Report No. 08-20, April 2008
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Florida compares favorably to other states in its efforts to control contraband in prisons, using narcotic canine teams, contraband sweeps, visitor and officer pat searches, and metal detectors at all prisons. While random drug tests show that Florida has a relatively low rate of inmate drug use, other types of contraband, notably cell phones, are a growing problem. Cell phones are considered to be contraband under Department of Corrections’ policy due to their potential use by inmates to arrange escapes and orchestrate crime inside and outside prison. The Legislature may wish to revise the law so that persons that provide and use contraband cell phones can be prosecuted. The department’s ability to control contraband also would be enhanced by improving its computer system that tracks contraband incidents, providing additional training to prison employees, and developing a statewide policy to guide wardens in sanctioning visitors who bring contraband on prison property.

Which Government Program Summaries contain related information?

Department of Corrections

What other OPPAGA-related materials are available?

  • Report No. 07-16 Some Inmate Family Visitation Practices Are Not Meeting the Legislature’s Intent, published in February 2007.
  • Report No. 07-15 Corrections Experiences Turnover and Vacancies, But Performance Not Diminished, published in February 2007.
  • Report No. 07-14 Corrections Rehabilitative Programs Effective, But Serve Only a Portion of the Eligible Population, published in February 2007.

Copies of this report in print or alternate accessible format may be obtained by telephone (850/488-0021), by FAX (850/487-9213), in person, or by mail (OPPAGA Report Production, Claude Pepper Building, Room 312, 111 W. Madison St., Tallahassee, FL 32399-1475).
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