Gaining Profits off American Incarcerations

by Vins
Published: Last Updated on

Justin Blush, a writer for Media Roots, highlights the problems of a highly privatized American prison system in his September 2013 article, Incarceration: a New American Pastime. The first privatized prison contract in the United States was given out in 1984 to the company Corrections Corporation of America (CCA), and since then CCA has thrived through the recession on a demand for higher prison capacity, and also on a corporate philosophy that places profit above everything. The numbers back this up as from 2005 to 2010, the number of inmates doubled to upwards of 2.2 million in America, which correlates with an increase in unwarranted arrests and incarcerations in America. All of this adds profit to CCA and other private prison groups in America, with all of them continuing to grow and create more and more space for inmates. Policies to send more Americans to prison have also increased with one notable case being New York’s “stop and frisk policy.” Some may argue that there is no relationship between the privatization of the prison system and the increase of incarcerations in America, but this relationship is undeniable.


Justin Blush, “Incarceration: a New American Pastime” Media Roots, September, 12, 2013,

Student Researcher: Ryan Burke (College of Marin)

Faculty Evaluator: Susan Rahman (College of Marin)