Sample Research Paper On Prison Privatization

Type of paper: Research Paper

Topic: Prison, Confidentiality, Crime, United States, America, Business, System, Quality

Pages: 5

Words: 1375

Published: 2020/10/14


This paper advocates the negative impact of the private prison system in the United States of America. We have data from recent studies that largely indicate profit making as the sole objective for these institutions. This paper has compiled those studies and recent lawsuits by the ACLU (American Civil Liberties Union) against the malpractices rendered by private penetentiary establishments. Furthermore, this paper considers the constraints of State Governments in abolishing private intitutions and provides recommendations that will allow the regulation of such establishments. In most of the services provided by the private sector barring Government projects, the quality of deliverables is superior. Hence, it is forseeable that such quality could also be achieved with Government projects; provided, there are additional clauses that hold these institutions' accountable. We cannot remove one hundred and twelve thousand inmates in private prisons with no space to accomodate them. Therefore, there is a greater need for private prison reforms than closing their doors.


Origins of prison privatization
The history of private parties in the United States prison system dates all the way back to the American Revolution. The British used privately owned hulks anchored in English controlled ports. Although this practice was ended shortly thereafter, they became a reality once again after the American Civil War. Business men were eager to employ prisoners on their plantations and quarries, having freed their slaves. This practice was prevalent well into the twentieth century.

Prison privatization in the present time

Today, more than one hundred thousand inmates are incarcerated in private prisons. The facilities, rehabilitation programs, security, medical care and several other aspects that constitute to molding an appropriate environment that allows transformation are grossly inadequate in private prisons. Unlike State run prisons, these private prisons lack accountability to both legislature and to the American people.

Expectation Vs Reality

There were a host of expectations when prisons were privatized in the United States during the 1980s. One of the key expectations was increasing the prisons’ effectiveness in rehabilitating inmates to reform and join the community without harmful consequences. However, this expectation along with the others was eroded with the progression of time. Initial studies conducted during the mid-1980s indicated positive impact by private prisons due to their quality of services. However, over the years, private prisons are run in conditions that are far worse than their state run counterparts.

The table below examines how the expectation for a private prison is significantly different from reality.

(Filipovic 2013)

Reasons for deficiency

The primary reasons for the deficiency in the private prison system are listed below.
Increasing profit by reducing the quality of services
Little or no monitoring by State Correction Administrations
Resistance to change in policies
Poorly trained prison officers
High attrition turnovers due to paltry pay structure for staff
Lack of an accountability clause
Lack of adequate rehabilitation programs
Recommended measures for private prisons
The private prisons are here to stay despite their shoddy record. The Department of Corrections is facing a herculean task in managing the overcrowded and poorly maintained prison facilities. However, this situation doesn’t have to allow mistreatment of inmates or cause more tragedies (The Haases) than it already has. The below list constitute to the recommendations for running a private prison that might help improve what is fast becoming known as our Nation’s disgrace.

Periodic checks by State Corrections Department.

Training for private staff by State.
Compulsory online feedback system for prison inmates.
Inclusion of medical services.
Installation of CCTV cameras that are monitored by the State.
Cancellation clause for deviations in any of the above recommendations
In our society, there are some practices that are best stopped and the private prison system is one of them. However, with the increase in laws that protect American citizens and the rising drug problems are inclined to add to the prison population. Almost twenty percent of Americans are in prisons today. Hence, although eradication might not be the solution; measures are required to regulate these private prisons.


Filipovic, Jill 2013. America's private prison system is a national disgrace. The Guardian. Mississippi. Retrieved from:
Palmquist, Jim 2010. Consider negative aspects of private prison plan. Retrieved from:
Abramsky, Sasha 2012. Arizona's Private Prisons: A Bad Bargain. The Nation. Arizona. Retrieved from:
Cohen, Donald 2014. Reality Has Turned the Tide Against Private Prisons. The Huffington Post. New York. Retrieved from:
Winter, Margaret & Eber, Gabriel 2012. Private Prisons Are the Problem, Not the Solution. American Civil Liberties Union. New York. Retrieved from:
Peak, K. J. (2012). Justice administration: Police, courts, and corrections management
(7th ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.

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WePapers. (2020, October, 14) Sample Research Paper On Prison Privatization. Retrieved September 25, 2023, from
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"Sample Research Paper On Prison Privatization," Free Essay Examples -, 14-Oct-2020. [Online]. Available: [Accessed: 25-Sep-2023].
Sample Research Paper On Prison Privatization. Free Essay Examples - Published Oct 14, 2020. Accessed September 25, 2023.

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