September 14, 2012
Privately Operated Federal Prisons for Immigrants: Expensive, Unsafe, Unnecessary
Since immigation reforms in 1996, detention has increasingly been used as a form of immigration enforcement. Since then, the number of immigrant detainees has increased dramatically. Increasing scrutiny (and here) has been given to the efficacy of such detention. Mark Dow, American Gulag (2004) critically analyzes the growth of the immigrant detention system in the United States.
Privately Operated Federal Prisons for Immigrants: Expensive, Unsafe, Unnecessary chronicles the May 2012 Adams County Correctional Center uprising in Natchez, Mississippi, a private for-profit facility operated by Corrections Corporation of America, under contract with the Federal Bureau of Prisons. The report details some of the tragic personal consequences for Juan Villanueva, his family, and others caught in the midst of the horrific conditions at the facility, leading to the insurrection. The report weaves into this narrative a look at the rise and fall of the private prison industry, and its resurrection through the benefit of federal contracts to detain and imprison undocumented immigrants, in an atmosphere of moral panic after the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
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