The Justice Department wants to get out of the private prison business.
Its announcement follows last week’s release of am Inspector General’s report showing that for-profit prisons are failures by just about any metric.
… privately operated facilities incurred more safety and security incidents than those run by the federal Bureau of Prisons. The private facilities, for example, had higher rates of assaults — both by inmates on other inmates and by inmates on staff — and had eight times as many contraband cellphones confiscated each year on average, according to the report.
All that, in spite of the fact that the inmates housed at for-profit prisons were “mostly low security” types.
Cherry on the sundae: the prisons “do not save substantially on costs,” according to Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates.
This ought to be another nail in the coffin of the privatization movement, which promises more efficiency and lower costs, but in fact deliver poor service, healthy profits for contractors, and employment security for their lobbyists and lawyers.
Before we get to the implications for Vermont, here’s your Moment of Schadenfreude: share prices in the two biggest private-prison companies collapsed on Wall Street, closing down by more than one-third.