Below is the letter we will send to Secretary Jeh Charles Johnson, on your behalf:
DHS: End Detention Center Contracts with Private Prison Companies
On August 18th, the U.S. Department of Justice announced that they are ending federal contracts with private prison companies. This is a crucial step towards ending the impact of private prison companies on our justice system but we must continue to fight their influence.
The private prison industry has a long history of contributing to mass incarceration in the U.S. which has disproportionately criminalized Black people. There have been numerous reports that many private prisons operate facilities with even poorer and more dangerous conditions than usual -- affecting inmates’ health, safety, and well-being.
The Department of Justice’s decision marks a major victory for our movement to end mass incarceration but, unfortunately, the federal government is not ending private prisons completely.
The biggest beneficiary of the private prison industry is the Department of Homeland Security -- which operates many of the detention centers where immigrants are held in horrible and inhumane environments. Similar to private prisons, DHS private detention centers also detain a higher rate of Black people, causing Black immigrants to be disproportionately affected.
Now that the Department of Justice has acted, it is more difficult than ever for Homeland Security to justify their use of private prison companies. It's clear that the Obama administration is looking to cut ties with this industry but we have to continue the pressure to finish the job.
Join us and Tell the Department of Homeland Security to put an end to the private prison system now.
Here is the Petition:
Dear Secretary Johnson,
I am writing to ask you to cancel all contracts with private prison companies. It is time to stop these companies from profiting off of the suffering of communities of color.
The Department of Justice has done its part in ending federal contracts with private prison companies. Now it is time for the Department of Homeland Security to take leadership -- put an end to detention centers once and for all. We need a more just and humane way to show up for our communities regardless of their citizenship status. Please do the right thing and end the relationship between DHS and private prisons today.