Wednesday, October 09, 2013

Private prisons don't work

More evidence from the UK that private contractors can't run prisons properly:

Britain’s biggest prison has been criticised by inspectors in another blow to its private operator G4S. HMP Oakwood in Wolverhampton, which can hold 1,600 inmates, had inexperienced staff and high levels of violence and self-harm, HM Inspectorate of Prisons said following a surprise visit.

In addition, the jail – dubbed “Jokewood” – urgently needed to address its approach to its near-300 sex offenders, many of whom were due for release without their offending having been addressed. The inspection found many prisoners felt unsafe and there was evidence of drug and alcohol use.

Fixing all of those things would cost money, which the corporate profit motive rules out. Contractors prefer to skimp, cover-up, and even commit fraud rather than deliver the service they're paid for.

Remember, this is how National wants to run our prisons: by shovelling money at multinationals who don't do the job. Better to keep them in public hands where we have control and accountability for failures.