Looks like the Obama Administrations fight for prison reform has worked as it has just been announced that The Justice Department has finally decided to stop using privately owned for-profit prisons in the United States.
The Justice Department plans to phase out use of private prisons, a move that affects a small percentage of the nation’s prisoners but could signal a broader effort to get states to follow suit.
The decision was outlined in a memo from U.S. Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates on Thursday, who said private prisons compare poorly to those run by the government.
“They simply do not provide the same level of correctional services, programs, and resources; they do not save substantially on costs, and…they do not maintain the same level of safety and security,’’ Ms. Yates said.
The Justice Department’s decision affects a fraction of the overall U.S. prisoner population because most of the country’s prisoners are in state prison systems. It also won’t affect how federal immigration authorities contract for prison housing or the U.S. Marshals Service, which uses private prison facilities to temporarily jail suspects and convicts.
A CCA spokesman said the contracts affected by Thursday’s announcement represent only 7% of their business, and noted the company has been expanding into other services, like re-entry services for soon-to-be freed prisoners.