Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Some Bad, Some Good

A fantastic report by Detention Watch Network, a nonprofit that advocates around immigration issues, shone a light on the shady lobbying activities of the largest private prison companies in the country, and how they have contributed to our nation's explosion of immigration detention.

"For years, private prison firms have played a critical role in shaping public policy around immigration detention, pursuing the bottom line at the expense of basic civil rights and tax payer dollars... This report highlights deep corporate investment in the detention business, raising concerns about how the corporate profit-motive is fueling the expansion of the detention system as a whole."

And now for the bit of good news. A federal district judge refuted the claims of the US government that it did not have to disclose information on the prices paid to private prison companies for the operation of immigration detention centers. This is a great decision which will hopefully lead to greater transparency and oversight of an unwieldy and inefficient contracting system that rewards poorly-performing companies.

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