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Visiting Applications and Rules for Inmates in the Hawaii DOC

Visitation is an important part of an inmate's successful rehabilitation.  Maintaining positive family and friend relationships can help an inmate become motivated to change behavior patterns and to think positively while incarcerated.  A greater effort is often required on the side of visitors who face the challenge of visiting a correctional institution, a place people don't ever want to go.  Many times prospective visitors become overwhelmed and anxious about what awaits them at visiting, and worry about the rules they will need to follow.  To make it easier for everyone and less stressful for friends and family members of inmates, we have assembled the most important things you'll need to know before you visit your inmate in Hawaii:

  • All visitors must be approved before visiting.  In order to become approved, you must first fill out a Hawaii inmate visitor's application.
  • Special visits, which include visitors traveling a long distance and infrequently, Attorney's, Clergy, Government officials, law enforcement, do not need to be on the inmate's visiting list, but they do need prior approval from the Warden to visit.  They also can visit during times outside of the standard visitation schedule.
  • Visitation is a privilege, any inmate with disciplinary action against them may lose visiting privilege for a length of time not to exceed the length of disciplinary punishment.
  • All minors who are visiting an inmate must be accompanied by an adult who is also on the approved visitation list.  The only exception to this is if the minor is legally married to the inmate, they will need to have proof of marriage prior to their visit (a marriage certificate).
  • Adults and Minors who are 13 years or older must have a valid photo ID (state ID, drivers license, school ID, or government ID such as a passport).  If a visiting minor is under 13 they must have a birth certificate with them to visit, if they have a different last name then the inmate the birth certificate must establish and verify the common parent who is incarcerated.
  • The maximum number of visitors will depend on what institution the inmate is incarcerated at and is listed on the facilities page.
  • It is the responsibility of the inmate to inform all visitors if their application has been approved or denied.
  • All visitors and their belongings will be searched upon entering the facility.  This includes walking through a metal detector, frisk/pat-down search, and possible ION-Scanner, Canine, or strip search if there is reasonable cause to believe the visitors possesses some form of contraband.
  • No cell phones, cameras, iPods, or other electronic devices are allowed to enter with you into the facility.
  • No tobacco products including lighters may be on your person when entering the facility.
  • You may not bring any items with you to give to the inmate during visitation.
  • Some facilities will provide lockers in the institution to store your personal belongings while you visit, but in general, a good rule to follow is to bring a single car key, your ID and leave all other unnecessary items in your car.
  • All cars on institutional grounds may be subject to a search, if drugs, alcohol, weapons, ammo, or other questionable items are found you will not be allowed to enter into visitation and law enforcement may be notified.
  • Fighting, arguing, talking loudly, and being disruptive are all grounds for your visit being terminated, you will be escorted out of the institution and may lose visitation privileges.

Some additional information you may want to know about visiting an inmate in Hawaii:

  • When an inmate is transferred from one facility in Hawaii to another facility in Hawaii their visiting list is transferred with them, so you do not need to reapply.  It is important to note that the new facility may do another background check on each visitor on the list, and if any circumstances have changed such as a visitors criminal history, then the facility may deny future visitation to that visitor.
  • Some facilities will have vending machines available to you during visitation, bringing small bills or quarters with you to purchase items from the machines is allowed at these institutions.
  • If you are visiting with an infant/baby or small child you will be allowed to bring a few additional items to visitation.  A single extra diaper, a single clear plastic bottle of liquid, and a single blanket that is not quilted, padded, or lined will also be allowed (all of these items will be inspected).  All diapers must be removed and changed in the presence of a staff member upon entering into visitation to ensure no contraband is hidden.

Dress Code/Contact Rules for Visitors of Inmates in Hawaii

Another important thing to remember when visiting an inmate in Hawaii is that you must follow a dress code.  If you wear something that violates the dress code you may be turned away from visitation, this is why you should read over the following list closely to ensure your compliance.

  • Hats, caps, ponytails, buns, ribbons, beads, braids, dreadlocks, clips, picks, pins, wigs, toupees, hair extensions or hair ornaments of any kind are not allowed.
  • Visitors may not wear bathing suits or lava lavas.
  • No jewelry or sunglasses may be worn.
  • Any clothing that closely resembles the inmate's clothes or the staff's clothes is prohibited.
  • No purses, handbags or wallets can come into visitation.
  • No lined sweaters, jackets, padded, hooded, or clothing with false pockets may be worn.
  • Uniforms such as military or doctors/nurse scrubs are restricted from being worn.
  • All inmates must wear shoes or sandals.  Bare feet are not allowed.
  • Flip flops, zoris, or black rubber slippers are prohibited.
  • No Shorts, capri pants, skin-tight see-through, spandex, leggings, or any pants that are above the ankle or have false pockets or cuffs are allowed to be worn.
  • Everyone must have underwear on, no bras without straps, athletic bras, or underwire bras may be worn.
  • Dresses and Muumuus must not be more than 2 inches above the kneecap when sitting or have a slit in them that rises above the kneecap when sitting.  These items must be worn with slips.
  • Pants must not have cuffs.
  • Coveralls are not allowed.
  • All shirts/blouses and tops may not be tucked into pants, must have 3 inches of overlap over pants/skirts, must have sleeves, and must not expose the midriff, back, shoulders, cleavage, or excessive skin.  In addition, shoulder straps of tops must be 2.5 inches or more in width.
  • If the clothing is tight such as spandex, leggings, tube tops, tank tops, or is sheer or see-through it cannot be worn.
  • If your clothing contains offensive language or images you will not be allowed to visit.