General Visiting Information
Visitors entering CDCR institutions/facilities are subject to a search of their person, vehicle, and property to the degree necessary to ensure institution/facility security and prevent the introduction of contraband. Visitors may leave the institution grounds rather than to submit to a search of their person, vehicle or property. However, refusal to submit to the search will result in the denial of visitation for that day. Visitors shall not be forcibly searched unless institution/facility officials possess a court-issued warrant to conduct the search, or the visitor is being detained for unlawful actions or activities in accordance with Title 15, Section 3292.
All visitors should also be aware that CDCR is prohibited from recognizing hostages for bargaining to effect an escape by inmates or for any other reason(s). In addition, the prison may be surrounded by an electric fence. To protect visitors, especially children, from being injured, visitors are cautioned to stay away from the perimeter fence line.
It is a crime to
- Assist an inmate to escape.
- Bring onto the grounds any weapon, firearm, ammunition, explosive device, tear gas, pepper spray, alcohol or controlled substance, cameras and/or recording devices.
- Take letters and/or written documents to or from an inmate.
- Falsely identify yourself to gain admission to the institution.
- Enter without the permission of the Warden if you have previously been convicted of a felony.
Types of visits
The following describes the different types of visits and their limitations. If the number of visitors on a particular day is especially high, visits may be terminated to allow all visitors the opportunity to use the visiting facilities.
Visitors may visit with the inmate in the visiting room or in the visiting patio area where approved. The number of visitors is limited to no more than five visitors per inmate, including children at the same time. Groups of visitors in excess of five may be accommodated only once per visit by means of rotation through the visiting area. Such a rotation shall be considered a single visit in the event it is necessary to terminate a visit in accordance with Title 15, Section 3176(a)(9) and (10). No time limit is imposed on contact visits except when the visiting room reaches capacity. Visits may be terminated to make room for other visitors as they arrive. The “first in, first out” rule is applied in this case.
Non-contact visits are conducted in non-contact booths. The number of visitors is limited to no more than three visitors, including children at the same time, for each inmate due to the limited space in the booths. Groups of visitors in excess of three may be accommodated only once per visit by means of rotation through the visiting area. Such a rotation shall be considered a single visit in the event it is necessary to terminate a visit in progress in accordance with Section 3167(a)(9) and (10). Non-contact visits shall be scheduled in one-hour increments and may be extended based on space availability. Visitors arriving without an appointment will be subject to space available and a visit is not guaranteed.
Normal Visiting Schedules
Each institution/facility has established a visiting schedule, which provides a minimum of 12 visiting hours per week. Institution heads have developed a local operational supplement, which includes their respective visiting schedules as follows:
- Two Days: Saturday and Sunday
Any routine modification to visiting hours and/or days shall be posted in areas accessible to visiting participants at least two weeks prior to implementation. Inmates may visit only during non-work/training hours except as provided in Title 15 Section 3045.2.
Visitor Questionnaire Process
The inmate should sign a Visitor Questionnaire (CDC Form 106) and send it to family members and friends to visit. All adult visitors must complete the questionnaire and return it to the Visiting Sergeant by mail. The Visiting staff must approve the questionnaire before the person may visit. This should take approximately 30 working days. The CDC Form 106 must be filled out completely and accurately. Failure to provide all requested information might result in the request being either denied or delayed.
The inmate will let each visitor know that they are approved. Any visitor approved at one institution shall be approved to visit the same inmate upon transfer to another institution. A visitor may be required to update the Visitor Questionnaire after 24 months.
Minors are only allowed to visit when they are accompanied by an approved adult visitor such as a parent, a court appointed legal guardian, or they have written, notarized permission to visit from the child’s parent or legal guardian and a certified birth certificate or embossed abstract of birth. Notarized letters must have the notary stamp on the original document; it must not be stapled or attached as an amendment and must be updated each calendar year.
Visiting with minors shall be prohibited for any inmate convicted for violating Penal Code Section(s) 187 or 192 involving a minor, 243.4, 261, 261.5, 262, 264.1, 266c, 266j, 273a, 273d, 273.5, 285, 286,288, 288a, 288.2, 288.5, 289, 289.5, 311.1, 311.2, 311.3, 311.4, 313.1, 314, and 647.6 unless specifically authorized by a juvenile court, pursuant to Welfare and Institution Code Section 362.6. Arrests without a conviction and substantial evidence shows the crime has taken place may be used to prohibit visits.
An attorney of record or legal representative must make an appointment with the institution designee,usually, the Litigation Coordinator or Visiting Room personnel to interview an inmate.
Persons on Active Parole/Probation
It is a felony for a former inmate or parolee/probationer to be on the grounds of any prison for any reason without prior written approval from the Warden of that institution. Persons discharged from parole must provide proof of discharge along with the Warden’s written permission to visit.
- A valid state driver’s license with picture (not laminated).
- A valid state Department of Motor Vehicles Identification Card with picture (not laminated).
- A valid Armed Forces Identification Card with picture.
- Identification Card issued by the United States Department of Justice Immigration and Naturalization Services with picture.
- Picture Passport.
- Picture identification Matricula Consular De Alta Seguridad (MCAS) issued by the Mexican Consulate.
It is recommended that visitors dress conservatively and with the following guidelines in mind. Inappropriate attire will be reason to deny a visit. Any alteration to clothing once a visitor is inside the visiting area, will be grounds for terminating the visit.
- Clothing which, in any combination of shades or types of material/fabric, resembles California State-issued inmate clothing, blue denim or chambray shirts and blue denim pants.
- Clothing that resembles law enforcement or military-type clothing, including rain gear.
- Hats, wigs or hairpieces (except with the prior written approval of the Visiting Sergeant).
- Clothing that exposes the breast/chest area, genital area, or buttocks.
- Dresses, skirts, pants, and shorts exposing more than two inches above the knee, including slits when standing.
- Sheer or transparent garments.
- Strapless or “spaghetti” strap tops.
- Clothing exposing the midriff area.
- Clothing or accessories displaying obscene or offensive language or drawings.
- Brassieres with metal underwires or any other detectable metal are not permitted.
- Identification Card.
- One Handkerchief, no bandannas.
- Tissue Pack, unopened.
- Clear Change Purse.
- $50 Per Adult and $20 Per Minor Visitor, in Coin or One Dollar Bills Only.
- Comb or Brush.
- Two Keys On A Ring with No Attachments.
- 10 Photographs.
- Indian Medicine Bag, upon inspection and approval.
- Two small (less than 12 inches in length) solid toys.
- One Infant Carrier.
- Six Disposable Diapers.
- Factory-Sealed Baby Wipes.
- Two Transparent Plastic Baby Bottles of Pre-Mixed Formula/Milk/Juice Per Baby.
- One Transparent Pacifier.
- Three Jars of Factory Sealed Baby Food and One Plastic Baby Spoon.
- One Single-Layer Baby Blanket.
- One Transparent Diaper Bag.
- One Change of Baby Clothing.
- One Single-Layer Burp Cloth.
Visitors may retain only life-sustaining, condition-stabilizing medication with the prescribing
physician’s written statement of its immediate need, and only in the physician’s prescribed amount immediately required to sustain or stabilize the condition during the visit. The physician’s written statement shall include the physician’s medical license number, address, and phone number.
All medication shall be in its original pharmacy container with the patient’s name, pharmacy, name of medication, prescribed dosage, and the physician’s name indicated on the container’s label. Nonprescription medicine is not permitted.
- All tobacco and tobacco products.
- Food. All refreshments are to be purchased from the vending machines located in the visiting room, except Camps and Ranches.
- Chewing gum.
- Cell phones.
- Writing materials or books, unless approved prior to entering the Visiting Room.
All visitors must successfully pass through a metal detector to enter the visiting area. Any items that may set off the metal detector (e.g., hairclips, hairpins, jewelry, belts, belt buckles, suspenders, shoes, etc.), should be removed before attempting to pass through the metal detector. If the visitor cannot successfully pass through the metal detector, the visitor is subject to delay, additional searches, or denial of visit.
Visitors who have implants or prosthetic devices must bring a notarized statement from their physician detailing the implant or device and its specific location in the body. Visitors with implanted
or prosthetic devices, wheelchairs, or other assistive devices may contact the Visiting Sergeant for information and/or special instructions. The medical verification shall be renewed every two years.
Visiting Room Procedures
Each visitor and inmate is responsible for his or her own conduct while visiting. Violation of the rules and regulations may result in termination, restriction, suspension, or denial of visits. Additionally, disciplinary action may be taken against the inmate. An inmate and his/her visitor(s) are allowed to briefly embrace and kiss at the beginning and end of their visit. An inmate may hold his or her minor children. Inmates may also hold minor children accompanied by an adult. Children are to remain under the direct supervision and control of the visiting parent or guardian at all times. Holding hands on top of the table in plain view is permitted, with no other physical contact. Excessive contact, (kissing, massaging, stroking, and sitting with legs intertwined or sitting on laps) could result in termination of the visit. Nursing mothers shall be discreet and covered when breast-feeding their baby in the visiting area. Failure to do so may result in termination of visiting for that day. Inmates cannot receive any items, gifts, money, jewelry, or documents during a visit. However, the adult visitor may ask for a pencil and notebook paper as needed. Smoking is not allowed in the visiting rooms or outside patios in the institutions at any time.
Citizen’s Complaint Process
If you have a problem concerning visiting, you should try to resolve it immediately. You should ask to speak with the Visiting Sergeant and/or Visiting Lieutenant.
Visitors may appeal in writing departmental policies, staff decisions, and institution/facility procedures relating to visiting. All appeals by visitors related to visiting shall be submitted in writing to the institution head.
A written response shall be provided within 15 working days from receipt of the appeal. If dissatisfied with the institution/facility response or action, the appellant may refer the appeal, with a copy of the institution/ facility decision, to the Director or designee.
A written response to appeals addressed to the Director shall be provided within 20 working days from the date of receipt.
All subsequent decisions made as the result of an appeal and the reasons for the decisions shall be documented with a copy to the appellant and/or inmate. Visiting privileges shall be promptly approved or restored when an investigation concludes that no violation of rules, regulations, or procedures took place.