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General News

Prison Inc: The Secret Industry

There are 2.3 million people living behind bars in the United States
● The US prison system costs the federal government $55 billion every year
PRISON VS. JAIL
● Jails are locally-operated facilities that hold inmates for a short period of time
● Prisons are long-term facilities run by the state or federal government
PRISON: A GROWING INDUSTRY
Between 1990 and 2010, the number of privately operated prisons in the US increased 1600%
● Private prisons bring in roughly $3 billion in revenue every year
○ Over half of this comes from holding facilities for undocumented immigrants
■ Private prisons run over 50% of detainment facilities for immigrants
BIG BUSINESS
Two of the biggest private prison companies in the country, Corrections Corporation of America and The GEO Group, made $3.3 billion in annual revenue in 2012.
● These two companies make up 75% of the private prison industry
○ CCA operates 67 prisons in the US
○ GEO Group operates 95 prisons in the U.S. and abroad
Cheap Labor
The prison industry makes money by contracting prison labor to private companies
● This includes
○ Starbucks
○ Boeing
○ Victoria’s Secret
○ McDonald’s
○ Prisoners work in apparel, document conversion, call centers, printing and clean energy
● A single prisoner’s labor is worth between 93 cents and $4 a day
The Government Paycheck
● “Lockup Quotas”: Contracts guarantee that prison occupancy rates will stay at or above a specified level
● “Low-Crime Taxes”: If occupancy rates are not fulfilled, the government must pay for the empty beds
● In contracts with the government, some private prison companies demand minimum occupancy levels of more than 0%
Price Per Prisoner
Average annual cost for correction expenses per inmate
● The national average for correction expenses per inmate was $28,323/year in 2010
● Harvard’s full-time tuition cost per year is $40,016
● In 2012, New York City spent almost $168,000 per inmate in food, housing and security
○ of that comes from taxpayer money
Crime Does Pay. But for Whom?

Full Article

Join the discussion

  1. Q

    Keyword in this article is “industry.” This is a clear cut example that our politicians and leaders do not know what they are doing when it comes to what is good for society, and do not have our best interest in mind; for many the main interest is personal gain in the form of money, property or prestige/reelection, they have their interests in mind and the “sex offender lie is included in their warped concept’s of the way things should be. Prison in the U.S.A. has turned in a way for states and companies to make money at the expense of America it’s self. The have severely damaged the principals this country was founded upon by way of scare tactics used in conjunction with phantom issues that are just not real.

    The U.S.A. has 5% of the worlds population and 25% of the worlds prisoners. There is something wrong with that picture. There are organizations in America that lobby and push for many laws that have not been well thought out, such as the prison guards union and the police officers union. There are also many so called “grass roots” groups that do the same. Why’ the answer is simple, $.

    Our leaders need to study and act on the models of other countries where the prison population / public population ratio is considerably less. Unfortunately America is still considered the model for many societies despite the evidence that clearly indicates that these other countries should perhaps look elsewhere for examples of how society’s should deal with crime. America would do well to reconsider it’s approach to crime and punishment.

  2. Bruce

    http://abcnews.go.com/WNN/video/congressman-michael-grimm-threatens-tv-news-reporter-22278815
    Here is a Really good example of who can & who Can’t,,IF ANY OF US WERE TO SAY WHAT HE SAID especially the part of how HE would break him in half like a lil BOY & Thrown him from the balcony ? Say Good Bye “TERRORIST THREATS” Gitmo fer life and I DO NOT CARE WHAT PARTY SAYS THESE THINGS ! Just Makin’ a flippin’ Point. So He Was a Marine,,So Was 1/2 My family & only 1 acted like that My Uncle everyone else was Ok! Now I say that the reporters & News today DO have agenda’s & Probably do deserve such treatment @ times HOWEVER,,Let just 1 of Us say that an Apology WOULD NOT stop Prosecution & I KNOW THAT !

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