Privatized prisons have turned the prison system into a lean, mean, profit-making machine. Companies are cutting costs (and corners) at every turn, leaving prisoners in terrible situations, with little to no ability to get outside help. Obama’s mandate to rid the nation of privatized prisons helped alleviate that situation, but Jeff Sessions rescinded that, and private prisons are (for now) here to stay. When we tie prison populations to profits, however, companies have incentives to maintain a “client” base they can make money off of. Plus they’re able to use the prisoners for cheap labor.
Daniel Manville is a professor at Michigan State and directs the Civil Rights Clinic at MSU College of Law. He’s the author of Protecting Your Health & Safety: A Litigation Guide for Inmates, as well as the Prisoner’s Self-Help Litigation Manuel. He’s trying to get word out that all is not well in our prison system, and things need to change.
[1:05] Jason was excited about privatized prisons when he first heard of them, but the reality of them has left him opposed
[5:17] How for profit food vendors have fed inmates maggots, food from trash cans, and smuggled in contraband with no consequences
[9:50] Privatized prisons are doing a terrible job protecting inmates who are in danger
[14:40] The concept that ignorance of the law is no excuse is no longer applicable because we have so many laws
[18:33] Some privatized facilities can make you wait 2 months before you can see a doctor
[22:47] Immigation detainment uses privatized prisons, and some of them can stay a long time
[26:05] What kind of access the media has to inmates