I need your help.
I co-founded the Prison Policy Initiative to put the problem of mass incarceration — and the perverse incentives that fuel it — on the national agenda. Over the last 16 years, our campaigns have protected our democracy from the prison system and protected the poorest families in this country from the predatory prison telephone industry. Our reports untangle the statistics and recruit new allies.

But now, more than ever, we need your help to put data & compassion into the conversation. Any gift you can make today will be matched by other donors and go twice as far.

Thank you.
—Peter Wagner, Executive DirectorDonate
Graph showing decline of the cost of a phone call: following a fairly steady downward trend starting at around $1 a minute in 1950 and ending at below $0.25 a minute by 1994.

Data Source: Federal Communications Commission, Statistics of Common Communications Carriers, 1994. (Graph: Peter Wagner, 2014)

This graph originally appeared in Today the FCC dragged the prison telephone industry kicking and screaming into the 21st century.

Rates are based on per minute cost, in 2013 dollars, of a 10 minute call from New York City to Philadelphia at the night/weekend rate, 1950-1944.

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