State Senate Majority Leader Gloria Romero says more specific access to state prisoners is necessary to shed light on the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation’s practices. That’s why she’s holding a hearing on the subject prior to the new legislative session.
Currently reporters are allowed to interview random prisoners or they can be placed on a specific inmate’s visitor list but cannot bring recording equipment into the visiting room. When Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger vetoed Romero’s media access bill this year, he cited concerns that interviewing specific prisoners could glamorize the criminals.
A spokesman for the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation says new regulations are being drafted but notes that media have access every day to state prisons.