COVID-19 information

All in-person personal visits to Victorian prisons are currently suspended. Virtual visits via Zoom bookings remain available.

If you have any urgent concerns – please contact the relevant prison or call 1300 191 835.

On this page

  • Personal contact with a prisoner
  • Postal mail
  • Phone calls
  • Video visits
  • In-person personal visits
  • Email a Prisoner service
  • Property for prisoners during COVID-19 restrictions
  • Sending money
  • Bans and previous imprisonment or community correction order
  • Assistance for visitors

Personal contact with a prisoner

If you want to contact your friend or family member you need to know which prison they are in. If you don't know their prison location you can contact them by writing to the below address and Corrections Victoria will forward your mail.

Write to:

[Prisoner's first name and surname]
c/- Corrections Victoria
GPO Box 123
Melbourne VICTORIA 3001
AUSTRALIA

If you are on the prisoner's approved visit or phone list, call Corrections Victoria on 1300 191 835. Instructions on how to get on a prisoner’s approved visit and/or phone lists are below.

If you are a legal professional or service provider phone and video conferencing is available.

Postal mail

If you would like to send mail to your family member or friend address your letter directly to the prison in which they are located. Or you can send your letter to a central point and it will be provided to them. Write to:

[Prisoner's first name and surname]
c/- Corrections Victoria
GPO Box 123
Melbourne VICTORIA 3001
AUSTRALIA

There are restrictions on the type of letters that can be sent to prisoners. These can vary from prison to prison but may include musical cards or extras like stickers and photographs.

Contact the specific prison for help on what you can and cannot send.

All mail (other than exempt official mail, for example from a lawyer or the Victorian Ombudsman) will be checked for banned items.

The prison may censor the letter if the content risks the security and good order of the prison or is threatening or harassing.

Forwarded mail

If a prisoner is transferred to another prison or is in hospital for an extended period, their mail will be forwarded to them.

Delays to mail

Australia Post is reporting delays to deliveries due to high volumes and this may affect how long it takes for your mail to arrive. Thanks for your understanding. More information is on the Australia Post website (External link).

Phone calls

Prisoners can make phone calls to family, friends and legal professionals, as well as to other services.

You cannot make a phone call to a prisoner but, if you would like to receive a call, they must add you to their phone list. They have access to instructions and help in how to do this.

Once the prisoner has added you to their phone list, the prison will contact you to confirm your phone number. The prison will also ask you if you agree to receive phone calls from the prisoner.

If you agree you will now be on the prisoner’s phone list.

If you are not on their phone list, you can send them a letter asking them to add you.

Access to phone calls

Prisoners can have a maximum of 10 phone numbers on their phone call list at any one time.

Phone calls are limited to 12 minutes per call and may be monitored and recorded for security purposes.

Prisoners must pay for all phone calls, except calls to the Victorian Ombudsman and the Health Services Commissioner.

Video visits

Video visits will continue to operate and will remain a visit option for prisoners. 

The continued availability of video visits remains an important option for prisoners accommodated in designated COVID-19 units (e.g. protective quarantine, isolation etc) who will not be permitted to take part in the in-person visit program, as well as for prisoners whose family/friends may not be in a position to attend the prison.

To have a video visit with your friend or family member you will need to provide 100 points of identification each time.

Organising a video visit is different at each prison. Prisons are using either Zoom or BlueJeans.

Being added to a visit list

To access a visit with your friend or family member they must add you to their visit list. They will receive help in how to do this, but they will need the following details about you:

  • full name [first name and surname]
  • date of birth
  • address.

The prisoner will tell you when they have added you to their visit list. You can confirm that you are on their visit list and the prisoner’s location by contacting:

If you are not on a prisoner’s visit list, but would like to be, you can write to them and ask them to add you.

Zoom

Video visits using Zoom have been implemented at the following prisons:

  • Barwon Prison
  • Beechworth Correctional Centre
  • Dame Phyllis Frost Centre
  • Dhurringile Prison
  • Hopkins Correctional Centre
  • Judy Lazarus Transition Centre
  • Langi Kal Kal Prison
  • Loddon Prison and Middleton Annexe
  • Marngoneet Correctional Centre and Karreenga Annexe
  • Melbourne Assessment Prison
  • Metropolitan Remand Centre
  • Port Phillip Prison
  • Tarrengower Prison

A guide for visitors on how to access, set up and receive Zoom video calls is available.

BlueJeans

Video based visits using BlueJeans have been implemented at the following prisons:

  • Fulham Correctional Centre
  • Ravenhall Correctional Centre

A guide for visitors to access, set up and receive BlueJeans video calls is available.

Help to use video visits concluded on 31 March 2021

The Victorian Association for the Care and Resettlement of Offenders (VACRO) technical support service concluded on 31 March 2021. 

This service was established to assist visitors in setting up software for video visits when in-person visits were suspended.

Please contact the relevant prison if you have any questions

In-person personal visits

All in-person personal visits to Victorian prisons are currently suspended. Virtual visits via Zoom bookings remain available.

If you have any urgent concerns – please contact the relevant prison or call 1300 191 835.

Email a Prisoner service

Email a Prisoner is available to the family and friends of prisoners at all Victorian prisons.

You will need to know the location of the prisoner you want to email. You can find their location by writing to them at:

[Prisoner’s first name and surname]
c/- Corrections Victoria
GPO Box 123
Melbourne VICTORIA 3001
AUSTRALIA

Corrections Victoria can only disclose a prisoner’s location to a person who is already on the prisoner’s visitors list. You can check if your name is on the visitors list by phoning 1300 191 835.

Setting up to use the Email a Prisoner service

The steps below provide instructions on how to use Email a Prisoner:

  1. Go to www.emailaprisoner.com.au (External link)
  2. Select the button “sign up”
  3. Follow the instructions on the site.

Emails will be provided to the prisoner within two business days.

Cost

It is cheaper to email a prisoner than to send a letter. Sending a letter costs $1.10. However, if you want to attach a photo too, it is cheaper to send through the postal mail.

  • Send an email: $0.95
  • Request a reply: $0.75
  • Attach a photo: $0.65

Property for prisoners during COVID-19 restrictions

In line with the suspension of personal visits property is unable to be dropped off at prisons.

Property can be posted to the prison. When posting property, you must write your full name and address on the envelope or package so that staff can verify the identity of the sender.   

Prisons will generally accept approved property provided by a person who is listed on the prisoner’s valid visitors list. If you are not on the prisoner’s valid visitors list or do not intend to visit, you can request to be added to the prisoner’s valid visitors list by the prisoner you wish to visit/send property to.

Some prisons may have additional requirements, such as prior approval of items and/or sender, that you will need to complete before they will accept property that you want to send via post.

The type and amount of items that you are allowed to provide a prisoner varies from prison to prison. You can check the approval process and what items are allowed at each prison by going to the prison's webpage and looking under the ‘Property and money’ heading.

Corrections Victoria provides all prisoners with appropriate clothing and basic toiletries to ease the burden on families.

Prohibited items

A list of other prohibited items that cannot be take into prisons is available.

Sending money

Money for prisoners can no longer be dropped off at prisons. You must be on the prisoner’s visitors list to be able to send money.

To send money to prisoners, you can:

When sending a money order or a bank cheque to the prison, you must:

  1. write the prisoner’s full name and CRN (if known) on the front of the envelope
  2. write your own full name and address on the back of the envelope.

Prisoners can receive up to $140 per calendar month. Some prisoners may be eligible for an additional $50 per calendar month for phone calls.

Funds will be available to the prisoner on the following business day.

Cost

Currently, SPS is the most cost-effective way for family and friends (depositors) to transfer funds. Each transfer incurs a 3% processing fee, a 0.77% card payment fee and a processing fee of $0.94.

For example, a $10 transaction would incur an additional fee of $1.32 (total transaction cost for the depositor of $11.32). In comparison a money order would cost a total of $12.10.

Bans and previous imprisonment or community correction order

If you have previously been banned from visiting a Victorian prison, or have a Corrections Reference Number (CRN)/Person Identification (PID), you may not be permitted to visit, even if a prisoner has added you to their in-person/video visits list.

If you would like to visit with a prisoner, you must seek written permission from the prison's general manager and provide the following information:

  1. CRN/PID (if known) or your offences
  2. full name
  3. date of birth
  4. current residential address
  5. name of the prisoner you wish to visit
  6. reason/s you want permission to visit (such as your relationship with the prisoner)

The general manager will review your request and advise you of their decision.

You will have a CRN/PID if you have served a term of imprisonment in Victoria (sentenced or remanded) or have been subject to a Community Correction Order imposed by the court.

Assistance for visitors

The Victorian Association for the Care and Resettlement of Offenders (VACRO) can help you or the prisoner you are visiting with family and welfare matters. Go to the VACRO website for information (External link).