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Dear Family and friends of loved ones in Florida
This is a draft complaint that we've put out here at the FCADP. We encourage you to please file your on version of this. We understand that most of you are low income families who are barely surviving without being taken advantage of by Jpay and the FDOC. It is individually up to us whether we sit back and be the victim, or confront the problem and push for change. Let's make a difference one individual at a time.
BBB Service Specialist
Ms Rochelle Smith
4411 Beacon Circle
West Palm Beach. Fl. 33407
Dear Ms Smith
I'm coming to you concerning Jpay and its pricing discrimination within contract #C2885, for which it has with the Florida Department of Corrections. Where they are victimizing the family and friends who have loved ones incarcerated in the state of Florida. Charging me exuberant prices for e-stamps in order to keep in contact with my __________. Yes I'm having to pay my hard earned money, for these overpriced e-stamps to stay in contact with my ___________. Understand the FDOC doesn't pay my loved one. He doesn't have a paying job or away to earn money. So the financial burden falls on my shoulders. And these prices are outside those for which is charged to family and friends of prisoner's who are in other states.
According to Price discrimination. (1915) The practice of offering identical or similar goods to different buyers at different prices when the cost of producing the goods are the same. It states price discrimination can violate antitrust laws if it reduces competition. It may be either direct, as when a seller charges different prices to different buyers, or indirect, as when a seller offers special concessions to some but not all buyers.
Now if you look around this nation you'll see Jpay conducting business in numerous states, one of which is Washington state, where they charge the family and friends $10.00 for 60 e-stamps. And Jpay is obviously making a nice profit at that price range. Here I'm having to pay double that price! Where is the fair market value in that? Jpay and the state of Florida should not be allowed to victimize me, just because I'm unfortunate enough to have a loved one incarcerated in Florida. The court's have stated, "Fair market value," is that which a purchaser willing but not obligated to buy would pay to one willing but not obligated to sell, and income is only one factor to be considered. See Root v. Wood, 21 So. 2d 133 at155 Fla. When you consider just the income factor alone, people who are incarcerated comes from the lowest income families in the nation. All I'm asking for is Jpay and the FDOC to either lower the prices of their stamps, or allow me to go back to purchasing my e-stamps from Washington state. Which is a practice a lot of us poor family members were doing up until April 6, when Jpay blocked us from purchasing stamps from other states. Which goes against the principal of fair market value shopping and pricing. I've heard from numerous family members, who have stated that they will no longer be able to correspond with their loved one ,due to Jpays current restriction from buying e-stamps from Washington state. We need the help of the BBB to try to get these e-stamps at a reasonable price.
I thank you for your time and hopefully your help in correcting this.
A few days ago in Florida we were surprised to discover that the signing of amendment #A2 to contract #C2885 was going to make mail correspondence much more complex. As a reminder, the FDOC and JPay have planned to set up a sorting center that will process all letters, cards and photos to scan them and make them available on the inmates' tablets. Tablets which will, following the signature of #A2 be provided free of charge to each of the inmates and which will belong to the State. Although it was presented to us as an opportunity, a chance for each inmate to own a tablet without paying for it, we were already suspicious about the implementation of these changes. It is unclear how all this will be handled and at the moment we are still waiting for an answer from the signatories of the contract, but JPay is contractually required to implement this service by June 2020!
But it doesn't stop there, no!!
We are in the midst of a worldwide COVID-19 pandemic, a time when human links and communications are essential for the maintenance of the mental balance of the inmates but also of their family and friends! Usually it is for some a way to kill time in these inhuman cages where some are locked up 23h/24h, a real ritual and a way of living together for others, I am thinking in particular of couples who cannot share a "normal" daily life and whose "good morning" and "good night" email have become the only way to keep a bit of humanity in these relationships already heavily truncated by the many restrictions, I am also thinking of elderly parents whose children worry and like to have regular news throughout the day, just to make sure that everything is ok.
Today things are worse, we are told of thousands of deaths worldwide, we are told that this virus is gradually spreading in prisons in all states. And it is now, when we are more dependent than ever on their services, when we have no more physical contact with our incarcerated loved ones, that JPay decides to change its sales conditions! Isn't this something absolutely vicious and inhuman?
Yes, as you all know by now JPay has just changed the terms and conditions of sale for e-stamps, it is now only possible to buy and transfer e-stamps in the state in which you buy them. But then the question that everyone has been asking for years now demands an immediate answer! Why such a difference in price from one state to another? How does it justify it? Do states take a margin? The DOCs? Where does this money go? Let's take the numbers for example:
In the state of Michigan you can get 20 stamps for $5 when it costs $4.50 to get just 10 in Texas ! In the state of Washington you can get 60 stamps for $10 while it will cost $25 in Florida to get 70 stamps! And the list of inequality is long!
Numbers are good but behind those numbers there are going to be consequences, human consequences, mental health consequences! Yes perfectly! Because some poor families are not going to be able to afford to go from single to double the price and are going to have to reduce their contact with their loved ones in prison. Some Penpal who give their time and their budget to share a little friendship with isolated inmates will have to stop doing it because they will not have the financial means anymore and inmates will find themselves completely isolated!
We already knew that justice was reserved for those who have the means, but love, friendship and humanity too? What JPay has just done is inhuman and I weigh my words !
"MORE ILLEGAL CONTRACTS BY THE FDOC?"
Wanted to bring to your attention that Jpay, and the FDOC'S pricing, of the Jpay stamps could possibly be another case of illegal contracts with unlawful payments. The FDOC has a history of illegal contracts, that in 2006 sent former Secretary James V.Crosby Jr and Regional Director Allen Clark to Federal Prison. In 2011 Former Governor Rick Scott, terminated then FDOC Secretary James Buss, over contracts, that had "the appearance" of being shady. Well if you look at what's going on here, we have Jpay selling the same stamps to family, friends and inmates in Florida at double the price, of the family ,friends and inmates in Washington State. Jpay and the FDOC was selling 60 stamps for $21.00 here in Florida, yet you could buy these same 60 stamps from Jpay in the state of Washington for $10.00. Now with the new contract extension signed on October 25,2019 of contract #C2885 Amendment 2, they've further increased the price of the stamps by selling 70 stamps for $25.00 .And now blocking family and friend's from being able to purchase and use Jpay stamps from these discounted states, they have now put an end to some family and friends being able to afford the Jpay correspondence. So you tell me something's not rotten?!! And remember we are dealing with the poorest of society when your dealing with State inmates. So this total disregard for fair market value, and practices, and the price gouging of the lowest income families is reprehensible!!! If there's not illegal conduct going on with these over priced stamps, which you have to admit, that there is an appearance of this! When one state is getting the exact same stamps,product and services for half the price, but "if" ,there's nothing illegal going on, we still have an issue with price gouging of the most vulnerable of our society, which in and of itself is disgusting!!! We shouldn't be taking advantage of the poor, just because we can. That was the mentality of James V. Crosby Jr and Allen Clark. Both of whom deservedly went to prison and lost their jobs for what they did to the the family, friends and inmates they price gouged and stole from during their tenure as heads of the FDOC.
We need this looked into, for possible illegal and unlawful actions. And even if there's nothing illegal going on, we need our current Secretary Mark Inch to correct these price disparities to where the families in Florida are paying the fair market value, that Washington states families are paying.
Please contact Secretary Mark Inch and provide him with a copy of this.
I thank you for your time and help.
Ronald W. Clark Jr #812974