Federal Bureau of Prisons Renews Contract With the Company Formerly Known as CCA

So much for the Justice Department’s plan to phase out private prisons.

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The private prison company formerly known as the Corrections Corporation of America—recently rebranded CoreCivic—announced Tuesday that the Federal Bureau of Prisons will extend its two-year contract with the company, despite recent findings of inadequate supervision and gaps in oversight of private prisons.

In August, the Department of Justice announced that it would phase out its use of private prisons. The announcement came on the heels of a blockbuster Mother Jones investigation of a Louisiana CCA prison by reporter Shane Bauer, and just one week after the DOJ’s inspector general released a report that found shortcomings in safety, security, and oversight at private prisons used by the government. The Bureau of Prisons is a subsidiary of the DOJ.

The Bureau of Prisons’ 1,633-bed contract extension for the McRae Correctional Facility in Georgia goes against the recommendation of Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates, who in an August memo explained the DOJ decision to end its partnerships with private prisons. “As each private prison 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 law and the overall decline of the bureau’s inmate population,” Yates wrote. “This is the first step in the process of reducing, and ultimately ending, our use of privately operated prisons.”

The renewed contract covers 8 percent fewer beds than the former.

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You just sent an incredible message: that quality journalism doesn't have to answer to advertisers, billionaires, or hedge funds; that newsrooms can eke out an existence thanks primarily to the generosity of its readers. That's so powerful. Especially during what's been called a "media extinction event" when those looking to make a profit from the news pull back, the Mother Jones community steps in.

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