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DOC launches online tool to track packages sent to inmates


Harrisburg, PA – The Pennsylvania Department of Corrections (DOC) recently updated its website to include a new tool that allows users to more effectively track packages sent to loved ones incarcerated in DOC facilities.

Items including books, calendars, photo books, and magazines must be shipped directly from the vendor to the DOC’s Security Processing Center in Bellefonte, PA, where they are screened for contraband. The new package tracking system allows users to follow an item from the time it arrives at the Security Processing Center until it is delivered to the appropriate correctional institution.

“We heard concerns from the community that packages would show as ‘delivered’ on the shipper’s website after arriving at the Security Processing Center, and there was no way to follow the shipment to its final destination,” said DOC Secretary John Wetzel. “We are pleased to offer this enhanced package tracking system so that friends and family of incarcerated individuals can monitor their shipments throughout the entire process.”

The package tracking system uses the same unique tracking number issued by the United States Postal Service, UPS, FedEx, Amazon, and other commercial shipping services. Staff members at the Security Processing Center screen items for contraband and other security risks and forward them to the appropriate institution within three weeks. Once they arrive at a facility mailroom, packages are typically delivered to inmates within one day.

The Security Processing Center operates five days a week to keep parcels flowing to the inmate population. Staff screens approximately 2,500 magazines each week and has processed more than 302,000 books so far in 2021.

To access the new package tracking tool, and for more information on sending packages and other mail to incarcerated individuals in the state prison system, visit cor.pa.gov.