Justice Department Says It Plans to Reduce Use of Private Prisons


The Justice Department says it plans to reduce its use of private prisons after concluding that the privately run facilities are not as safe or secure as government run facilities.

The Justice Department is directing the Bureau of Prisons to take steps to reduce and ultimately end the use of privately operated prisons.

“I am directing that, as each contract reaches the end of its term, the Bureau should either decline to renew that contract or substantially reduce its scope in a manner consistent with the law and the overall decline of the Bureau’s inmate population,” Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates wrote Thursday.

The Department of Justice began contracting with private prisons to confine federal inmates after the federal prison population increased by 800 percent between 1980 and 2013. In 2013, as the federal prison population reached its peak, approximately 15 percent of the federal prison population were housed in privately operated prisons.

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SOURCE: CBS News, Paula Reid