Who is the Colorado Criminal Justice Reform Coalition?

Our mission is to reverse the trend of mass incarceration in Colorado. We are a coalition of nearly 7,000 individual members and over 100 faith and community organizations who have united to stop perpetual prison expansion in Colorado through policy and sentence reform.

Our chief areas of interest include drug policy reform, women in prison, racial injustice, the impact of incarceration on children and families, the problems associated with re-entry and stopping the practice of using private prisons in our state.

If you would like to be involved please go to our website and become a member.


Friday, May 09, 2008

NOW - Prisons For Profit (colorado)

[Streaming video of this program will be available online after broadcast]

Now on PBS
Friday, May 9, 8:30pm
A report on prisons operated by private businesses.
http://www.pbs.org/now/shows/419/index.html


Corporations are running many Americans prisons, but will they put profits before prisoners?

A grim new statistic: One in every hundred Americans is now locked behind bars. As the prison population grows faster than the government can build prisons, private companies see an opportunity for profit.

This week, NOW on PBS investigates the government's trend to outsource prisons and prisoners to the private sector. Critics accuse private prisons of standing in the way of sentencing reform and sacrificing public safety to maximize profits.

"The notion that a corporation making a profit off this practice is more important to us than public safety or the human rights of prisoners is outrageous," Judy Greene, a criminal policy analyst, tells NOW on PBS.

Companies like Corrections Corporation of America say they're doing their part to solve the problem of inmate overflow and a shortage of beds without sacrificing safety.

"You don't cut corners to where it's going to be a safety, security or health issue," Richard Smelser, warden of the Crowley Correctional Facility in Colorado tells NOW. The prison is run by Corrections Corporation, which had revenues of over $1.4 billion last year.

The Crowley prison made headlines back in 2004 after a major prison riot caused overwhelmed staff to run away from the facility. Outside law enforcement had to come in to put down the uprising.

"The problems that were identified in the wake of the riot are typical of the private prison industry and happen over and over again," Green tells NOW.

This week NOW travels to Colorado, where the controversy over private prisons is boiling over. The hot question: should incarceration be incorporated?
Related Links: Groups for Prison Privatization: Groups Against Prison Privatization:


PBS

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

If we stop this privatization movement, we will force the legislature and the out of control deparment of corrections to classify inmates properly. They will stop letting the guards abuse the prisoners. There will more pressure for DOC to do their real job instead of just putting problems behind walls.
Privatization will only bring more corruption to the prison industrial complex in Colorado.
Stop building all prisons and treat the illnesses with compassion.

Anonymous said...

it seems that using inmates for profit raises a constitutional issue in my mind. Slavery!!!djw

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