September 19, 2018 | Katie Meyer, Capitol Bureau Chief | WITF
(Harrisburg) -- A number of groups that provide legal assistance to inmates in Pennsylvania's state prisons have stopped mail correspondence with their clients.
They say they think the Department of Corrections' new protocols regarding legal mail could violate attorney-client privilege; if the policy isn't changed, they may sue.
In a letter to the department, the state chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union, the Abolitionist Law Center, and the Pennsylvania Institutional Law Project argued that the new mail policy--aimed to keep drugs out of prisons--violates inmates' rights.
Under the old rules, legal mail was given to incarcerated people directly.
Now it's photocopied, the inmate gets the copy, and the prison retains the original for 15 days.