immigrant detention

Apr 20, 2015
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Broward Palm Beach New Times

New Report Criticizes GEO Group for Making Big Bucks Off Immigrant Backs

"A scathing new report says the private prison industry is getting fat off profits from detaining undocumented immigrants in subpar conditions – and Boca Raton-based GEO Group is one of the main culprits.

In the report, titled Payoff: How Congress Ensures Private Prison Profit With an Immigration Detention Quota, Grassroots Leadership, a nonprofit opposed to mass incarceration, says GEO Group and Correction Corporation of America (CCA) has successfully lobbied an acquiescent Congress for laws that increase the number of immigrants in its detention centers, leading to sharp increases in profits." Read more about New Report Criticizes GEO Group for Making Big Bucks Off Immigrant Backs

Apr 28, 2015
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City Watch LA

Jailhouse Shock: U.S. Fattens Profits of Private Immigrant Prisons

According to a new report from Grassroots Leadership, the two largest private prison companies in the U.S. now run 70 percent of the ICE Detention System and are working hard to expand that share. 

The report, Payoff: How Congress Ensures Private Prison Profit with an Immigrant Detention Quota, written by Bethany Carson and Eleana Diaz, also debunks a major piece of misinformation from the industry. Officials from CCA and GEO Group often claim they don’t lobby on issues that affect populations, but the report shows how much both corporations have invested lobbying relevant committees in Congress on immigration and detention issues that pad their bottom line.  Read more about Jailhouse Shock: U.S. Fattens Profits of Private Immigrant Prisons

May 6, 2015
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US News and World Report

Clinton Criticizes Immigrant Detentions Under Obama

"Clinton on Tuesday also referenced the so-called detention bed quota, which has expanded the number of immigrant detention beds the government is required to maintain to 34,000. A recently released report by the group Grassroots Leadership revealed that members of the private prison industry, which operates over half the beds in detention facilities, have spent millions combined on immigration-related lobbying efforts as Congress has dealt with the quota issue.

'I'm not sure a lot of Americans know that a lot of the detention facilities for immigrants are run by private companies,' Clinton said. 'They have a built-in incentive to fill them up, that there is actually a legal requirement that so many beds be filled. So people go out and round up people in order to get paid on a per-bed basis. I mean that just makes no sense at all to me. That's not the way we should be running any detention facility.'" Read more about Clinton Criticizes Immigrant Detentions Under Obama

U.S. Department of Justice’s Office of Inspector General Report Condemns GEO Operated Reeves County Detention Center

Last Thursday, the U.S. Department of Justice’s Office of Inspector General released a report chronicling a number of egregious practices taking place at the one of the world’s largest for-profit prisons. Reeves C

Apr 21, 2015
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Fox News Latino

Study: Private prison firms spend millions to ensure steady supply of undocumented immigrants

Private prisons that have contracts with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or ICE, spent millions of dollars lobbying Congress to keep a steady population of 34,000 migrants detained at all times, a study by the Austin, Texas-based Grassroots Leadership group found.

Grassroots Leadership researched detention conditions across the country and concluded that nine of the 10 facilities used by the Department of Homeland Security to house undocumented immigrants were private, and eight of them were owned by two corporations that have posted record profits since 2009. Read more about Study: Private prison firms spend millions to ensure steady supply of undocumented immigrants

Apr 20, 2015
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The Texas Observer

ICE Director to U.S. Rep. Culberson: We Can’t Just Put People in Detention for ‘the Heck of it’

In Congress, Geo Group, Corrections Corporation of America and other private prison companies spend millions on lobbying. Much of that lobbying is focused on powerful members of the appropriations committee like Culberson, who received campaign contributions from CCA, which runs detention facilities including Dilley’s controversial South Texas Residential Center, which detains women and children.

A new study by the nonprofit Grassroots Leadership finds that the private prison industry has increased its share of immigrant detention beds by 13 percent since the 2009 quota was passed. For-profit corporations now operate sixty-two percent of ICE immigration detention beds.

At one point during the U.S. House Appropriations Committee hearing last week, Saldaña tries to explain to the tea-partier Culberson that she can’t put people in detention “just for the heck of it.” Read more about ICE Director to U.S. Rep. Culberson: We Can’t Just Put People in Detention for ‘the Heck of it’

Apr 19, 2015
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RawStory

Asylum-seeking mothers launch hunger strike over inhumane conditions at Texas detention center

Detained asylum-seeking mothers at a for-profit detention center in Texas have gone on a hunger strike seeking their release, Freedom Speech Radio News reports.

The women, many of whom fled their countries in Central America  out of fear of violence or persecution, have all passed the “credible fear test” and qualify as asylum seekers. Despite that, they are still held with their children — some as young as 2 years old — in the Karnes Residential Center, a prison-like facility in South Texas, waiting for their cases to be processed.

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According to a new report from the Grassroots Leadership, private for-profit prison corporations spent $11 million over six years to lobby Congress to keep a mandatory immigrant detention quota.

Today, 9 out of the 10 largest immigrant detention centers are private, with 8 owned by only two corporations, the GED Group and CCA. Since the end of 2007, the GEO Group has increased their profits by 244% and CCA by 46%. Read more about Asylum-seeking mothers launch hunger strike over inhumane conditions at Texas detention center

Apr 19, 2015
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International Business Times

Report: Private Prison Lobbyists Spend Millions To Keep Immigrants Locked Up

A report released last week by Grassroots Leadership, a Texas non-profit, details how private prison companies have spent five years lobbying the government, not only to maintain the quota, but to enact conservative immigration reform that would continue to ensure a steady flow of inmates into its detention centers.

“Payoff: How Congress Ensures Private Prison Profit with an Immigrant Detention,” says 62 percent of all ICE detention beds now are operated by for-profit prison companies. In fact, nine out of the 10 largest immigrant detention camps are private, with eight owned by only two corporations -- Corrections Corporation of America and the GEO Group. Those two corporations reaped about $500 million in 2014 alone.

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“The immigrant detention quota continues to be a prime example of how money and political gain can drive policy decisions," the report notes. "Those harmed by the immigrant detention quota have far less power and money: immigrants, their families, and the average American taxpayer." Read more about Report: Private Prison Lobbyists Spend Millions To Keep Immigrants Locked Up

Apr 16, 2015
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Blue Nation Review

Private Prison Corporations are Making Record Profits off Detaining Immigrants

Immigration Policy Researcher and Organizer at Grassroots Leadership Bethany Carson co-authored a report released Wednesday that documented “the rise of for-profit detention of immigrants and increased lobbying to the DHS Appropriations Subcommittee in Congress.”

The report talks about “bed quotas,” the required minimum number of immigrants that must be detained at any given time, and how they increase profits for the private prison corporations.

According to the report, two corporations own eight of the nine largest privately owned immigration detention centers. Together, the two corporations, Corrections Corporation of America (CCA) and GEO Group made almost $470 million in revenue in 2014 from ICE detention.

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We must put an end to these “bed quotas.” The only purpose they serve it so make profits for privately owned prison corporations.

These corporations are profiting off of suffering, and they are using their enormous returns to poison our politics. Read more about Private Prison Corporations are Making Record Profits off Detaining Immigrants

Apr 15, 2015
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Huffington Post

Bed Quota Fuels 'Inhumane' And 'Unnecessary' Immigrant Detention: Report

The private prison industry’s growing role in immigrant detention is due in part to Congress' requiring the federal government to maintain some 34,000 detention beds, according to a report released Wednesday.

The report, drafted by Grassroots Leadership, a nonprofit based in Austin, Texas, calls on Congress to eliminate the immigrant detention quota from its 2016 appropriations request.

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Bethany Carson, a co-author of the study who spoke on the call, said the detention bed quota is “inhumane” and “unnecessary.” The Grassroots report urges policymakers to reduce the number of required detention beds through “community-based” alternatives to detention. The report does not describe those alternatives in detail, but Grassroots has in the past endorsed programs in which immigration authorities partner with non-governmental organizations to ensure that released migrants comply with court proceedings and find access to community services.

“The only beneficiaries from the detention quota are for-profit corporations that benefit from human pain,” Carson told reporters Read more about Bed Quota Fuels 'Inhumane' And 'Unnecessary' Immigrant Detention: Report

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