In August 2016, the U.S. Department of Justice said it would limit and eventually stop using private prisons altogether because data shows they are less safe and secure than government-run facilities, and do not cut costs. A Justice Department Inspector General report showed privately operated prisons have higher rates of property damage, assault and death than government operations. Critics are outraged Sessions and the White House are ignoring decades of evidence.
Atty. Gen. Jeff sessions claims he needed to rescind the Obama-era directive to create flexibility for the future needs of the correctional system:
Trump’s hardline stance on immigration practically guarantees an increased need for detention facilities, a gap that private prison companies are more than eager to fill. If Congress fully funds Trump’s proposal to round up and deport 2 to 3 million immigrants in the first year of his presidency, the immigration detention population will more than quadruple—requiring the construction of scores of new jails for immigrants.
Sen. Bernie Sanders has pointed out that Donald Trump’s victory has been a massive boon for the private prison industry.
The day after the election, shares of the two biggest private prison corporations, Corrections Corporation of America (CCA) and GEO Group, jumped 43 and 21 percent, respectively. Since Election Day, CCA and GEO’s stock value has increased by 75 and 54 percent.
Do we really want to make it profitable to lock up more Americans?
Detractors say making it lucrative to lock people up is a dangerous road that America should not go down.
Private prisons have profit motive to keep people incarcerated. In an era of mass incarceration we need prevention and rehab, not this. https://t.co/SUlHiJrNGc
If the Justice Department carries out plans to crack down on marijuana use and undocumented immigrants, they will need a place to store all of those people. And many believe the private sector can always do a better job than the government.