GEO

Oct 9, 2015
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Univision

Juan Carlos Ramos, el hispano que interrumpió a Hillary Clinton

Unos 23,000 inmigrantes se encuentran detenidos cada noche en prisiones privadas que manejan corporaciones contratadas por la Agencia Federal de Prisiones. Aproximadamente un 62% de todas las camas de detención para inmigrantes están en manos de corporaciones privadas, por encima de un 49% en 2009, según Grassroots Leadership, un grupo que busca dar fin a la encarcelación con ánimo de lucro.

Clinton misma denunció a estas compañías este año durante un discurso en Las Vegas. “No sé si muchos estadounidenses saben que muchas de las facilidades de detención de inmigrantes son dirigidas por compañías privadas, las cuales tienen un incentivo para llenarlas”, dijo Clinton, refiriéndose a un mandato congresional que obliga a funcionarios de inmigración a tener 34,000 camas disponibles cada noche.

“Entonces salen y buscan a gente para recibir pagos a base de cuántas camas están llenas. Eso no me tiene sentido”, dijo Clinton.


Pero Ramos cree que Clinton lo dice solo para ganarse el voto latino.

“Nuestro mensaje a Hillary Clinton es simple: los jóvenes inmigrantes no confían en ti. Es tiempo de abandonar el dinero de las prisiones y apoyar a nuestra comunidad—no puedes tener ambas cosas”, dijo Ramos en un comunicado antes de la protesta. “Cada dólar que su campaña recibe de prisiones privadas socava sus promesas a favor de los inmigrantes, y nuestra comunidad no será engañada”. Read more about Juan Carlos Ramos, el hispano que interrumpió a Hillary Clinton

A Tale of Two States: Washington and Vermont sign contracts to ship prisoners to Michigan

Two weeks ago we were disappointed to learn that both Washington state and Vermont awarded contracts to private prison corporation, GEO Group, to house overflow prisoners at the long-shuttered North Lake Correctional Facility in Baldwin, MI.

This is concerning not only because of GEO’s particularly egregious history at the Baldwin private prison, but also because shipping prisoners out-of-state for profit is regressive and harmful criminal justice policy.

It allows state leaders to ignore root causes of prison overcrowding and delay desperately needed sustainable reform. Shipping prisoners far away severs critical ties to family and community, compounding the already devastating effects of isolation felt by people who experience incarceration. It places enormous emotional and financial burdens on the families and loved ones of those shipped away. All the while, private prison corporations rake in profits for every prison bed they can fill.  Read more about A Tale of Two States: Washington and Vermont sign contracts to ship prisoners to Michigan;

U.S. Representative Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX) reintroduced the Private Prison Information Act

As taxpayers we entrust the government to utilize our hard earned wages wisely.  Commonly, when we believe our tax dollars are misused, we exercise the rights afforded to us as a democratic society to hold those with power - lawmakers, leaders of agencies, etc. - to account.  One of the tools of our democracy’s accountability measures is the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), a law that give us the right to access information from the federal government.  FOIA requests are often used to uncover corruption, scandals, mismanagement and other shortcomings in the functioning of our public systems.  

However, our ability to hold the government accountable becomes compromised when it outsources core functions, like incarceration, to private companies.  Currently, federal U.S. agencies (Bureau of Prisons, ICE, and the U.S. Marshalls) have outsourced the management of prison and immigrant detention facilities to private, for-profit companies like Corrections Corporation of America, GEO Group, and MTC (Management and Training Corporation).  Private corporations are not subject to FOIA laws even though they assume the role of the federal government in the administration of U.S. federal carceral facilities and are compensated with public tax dollars.  This fact creates tremendous barriers to justice for those who are incarcerated in privately-run federal facilities because the people who are tasked with protecting their rights do not, in this moment, have the right to request information about what is happening inside of these facilities.  This lack of transparency contributes, in our opinion, to the rampant cases of mismanagement, neglect, and other types of prisoner abuse that we have tracked for decades in private facilities, such as those documented in our Dirty 30 report.  

Read more about U.S. Representative Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX) reintroduced the Private Prison Information Act

May 28, 2015
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Huffington Post

Here's The Case For Abolishing Immigrant Detention

The view that immigrant detention needs rethinking has gained wider traction in recent months, following the Obama administration's expansion of family detention. Roughly 68,000 unaccompanied minors crossed the border illegally into the United States last year, as did a similar number of children and female guardians traveling together. The vast majority came from the violence- and poverty-plagued Central American countries of El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala, and they generally presented themselves directly to border authorities, in hopes of being treated like refugees and allowed to pursue asylum claims.

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Private prison companies operate 62 percent of the immigration detention system, according to a report published earlier this year by Texas-based advocacy group Grassroots Leadership. That figure is up from 49 percent in 2009. The report argues that privatizing detention creates incentives for corporations to lobby in favor of harsher immigration laws. Read more about Here's The Case For Abolishing Immigrant Detention

Advocates Oppose New Private Prison Contract to House Vermonters Out-of-State

(Burlington, VT) — The Vermont Department of Corrections announced today the signing of a new contract with private, for-profit prison corporation, the GEO Group, to house Vermont prisoners at the North Lake Correctional Facility in Baldwin, MI. Vermont prisoners currently housed in Corrections Corporation of America (CCA) prisons in KY and AZ will be transferred to the Baldwin facility this summer. Read more about Advocates Oppose New Private Prison Contract to House Vermonters Out-of-State

May 15, 2015
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Seven Days

Vermont Might Send Its Out-of-State Prisoners to Michigan

GEO representatives told shareholders during a recent conference call that the company was finalizing a contract with Vermont, according to Grassroots Leadership, a national watchdog that opposes the private prison industry. "We are very concerned that the people who are currently housed out-of-state in Kentucky will be transferred to Baldwin," Kymberlie Quong Charles, Grassroots Leadership's criminal justice programs director, said in an interview. Read more about Vermont Might Send Its Out-of-State Prisoners to Michigan

Michigan, don't help GEO reopen troubled private prison. Stop HB 4467 now!

Last Thursday the Michigan House approved legislation that would help private prison company, the GEO Group, get one of their shuttered prisons up and running again.

House Bill 4467, if passed, would allow GEO Group to house Level V high-security prisoners at the now-empty North Lake Correctional Facility in Baldwin, MI. Although the prison has been empty since 2011, Michigan law allows for the GEO prison to house prisoners, including those from other states, but only prisoners requiring Level IV security and below.

Read more about Michigan, don't help GEO reopen troubled private prison. Stop HB 4467 now!

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

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