I spent a few years in one of the biggest private prisons in America, Correction Corporation of America (CCA). It was an experience unlike any other. It is a unique experience to say the least. To be incarcerated in a prison system where stocks are openly traded, daily. To know that there are many people who are involved in the Criminal Justice System hold stocks and shares in CCA. I once, during a conversation, heard a college professor admit that even he had shares in private prisons.
Ultimately, incarceration is the burden of the government. Not the public. In the case of private prisons it has become a thing where private companies bid on contracts. The bid is not who can provide the most work related skills program or substance program. Rather, who can feed them, cloth them and provide medical attention to the for the lowest price.
Whatever company wins the bid now must set up the services needed. They often use other private companies to provide those services. So they bid out the the lowest bidder.
Aramark is a private food company that service CCA facilities. They have the worst food ever. The rations are low and the quality of the food is poor. Often carbohydrate induced and processed meats are served with every meal. Vegetables and fruits are hardly served, if ever. When they are served they are often of the lowest quality and grade.
The clothes that are provided are no more than a pair of scrubs. Two piece outfit. A short sleeve shirt, regardless of the weather, with one pocket. And, a pair of pull up pants with no pockets. This outfit saves money on tailoring expenses and other accessories needed to wear pants, such as a belt. Which cost more money.
This is just a small glimpse of what it was like to be in a private prison. The list of what is often wrong with these prisons can go on and on.
Privatization of the US Prison System
Privatization of the US Prison System. An Infographic from ArrestRecords.com