Private prison corporations like CCA (Corrections Corporation of America) along with right-wing lobbying group ALEC (American Legislative Exchange Council), the GEO group and a few pocketed state legislators like Russell Pearce in Arizona have long been promoting and designing laws aimed at incarcerating immigrants and turning the prison system into an incredibly profitable business.
The Department of Homeland Security pays $200 per day per person ($72,000 per year) to local, county and state prisons to house apprehended immigrants rounded up in raids until their deportation or legal proceedings. According to the Brave New Films documentary Immigrants for Sale, CCA, together with other prison companies, owns more than 200 private prisons with 150,000 beds and is making $5 billion on immigration detention centers a year.
“Private prisons profit like a hotel. The more occupants they can throw in, the more money comes out.”
The tax payer is fooled to believe that CCA, ALEC and their associates are in it to “fix” the immigration issue. They are in it because it’s all about the profit. The more immigrants to put behind bars, the more Latinos to incarcerate while waiting for proof of papers, the more individuals to get lost in the system –the more dollars deposited into their bank accounts. It’s that easy and simple.
Immigrants For Sale also highlights the horrors of the private prison industry through the eyes of two families stuck in the crosshairs of the immigration epidemic. Through moving testimonials, the documentary captures the injustices inflicted on a record numbers of non-violent marginalized people, imprisoned under inhumane conditions for unknown immigration violation, in order to feed corporate profits and politicians.
The documentary dissects SB1070, a sweeping and controversial anti-immigration bill enacted in Arizona, which ensures that tens of thousands of undocumented immigrants end up into for-profit private detention facilities. SB 1070 has been imitated by similar laws – some even stricter and more encompassing – in other states including HB 56 in Alabama, Utah’s Compact / HB 497, Indiana’s SB 590,Georgia’s HB 87 and South Carolina’s S 20.
Immigrants For Sale exposes the connection between the so-called crackdown on illegal immigration and the for-profit corrections industry. It explores the shocking commerce of incarceration – how the anti-immigration legislation is being driven by influential private prisons, how immigrants are being detained for profit, bought and sold like products.
Mike Damanskis, Director of Digital at Brave New Films, told ReverbPress:
“Private prisons create a profit incentive for incarcerating people. They start by telling the state ‘We’ll take over your state prisons, and run them at a much lower cost than you can run them.’ But we’ve seen time and time again that this is just simply not true. They cut corners wherever possible, on food, medical care, or adequately trained staff. Any cost ‘savings’ goes straight to the executives and shareholders, who then lobby for stricter laws, harsher penalties, and more prisoners.
“Prisoner rape and abuse is common in these facilities. They serve maggot-infested food and save money by bypassing the hospital and taking sick prisoners straight to the morgue. Like all profit-driven businesses, these prisons seek to expand. Meanwhile, states like Arizona are slashing education budgets, but they always seem to have more money for prisons. Less schools equals more prisoners equals more money for prison investors. They want a return on their investment and they will do anything to get it.”
This Article (Immigrants For Sale: The Untold Harrowing Tale Of America’s Private Prison Industry) is free and open source. You have permission to republish this article under a Creative Commons license with attribution to the author and AnonHQ.com.
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