Crime & Justice

State cancels prison visits this Labor Day

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The state is canceling a regular visitation day at its prisons for the second time this summer. Corrections officials hope to save $325,000 by keeping family and friends out on Labor Day.

On holidays and weekends when inmates receive visitors, correctional facilities deploy more guards – and that translates into more overtime pay. Department officials say the fewest people visit prisons on the Monday of Labor Day weekend.

Relatives and friends will be able to visit on Saturday and Sunday of that weekend, and adult inmates may visit with their lawyers on September 6. Visits can also take place that day at the department’s five youth correctional facilities.

On the final weekend in June, California also canceled all visits to adult prisons. A spokeswoman said then that Corrections and Rehabilitation had already frozen hiring and limited staff purchases and travel to save money.

The department does plan to allow visits on other major holidays – but officials would like to permanently remove Labor Day from the visitation calendar.