Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Clinton reportedly announced in a meeting with the leaders of #BlackLivesMatter movement in Washington that she wants to “end private prisons” in America, according to ThinkProgress.com.
In a related note, Clinton has allegedly announced that she is no longer accepting campaign contributions from powerful private prison lobbyists, according to ColorOfChange.org.
According to their reports, private prisons such as the Corrections Corporation of America (CCA) and GEO Group have spent millions to influence politicians that control criminal justice policy in order to continue operating their profit-generating prisons.
According to ColorOfChange.org
Private prison companies are responsible for some of the worst human rights abuses targeting Black communities in America, especially Black trans women who are disproportionately targeted by police.5,6 Companies like CCA and GEO Group are focused on one thing: profit. And in order to make the most money for their shareholders, they cut corners on critical health, safety and rehabilitative services, creating some of the worst conditions in the country. Over the past 25 years, CCA and GEO Group have given $10 million to candidates and spent $25 million lobbying for laws that put more people in prison.7 Now, these companies are hard at work figuring out how to profit off growing political support for “alternatives to incarceration,” launching highly exploitative electronic monitoring and probation services that bankrupt low-income Black folks.
Think Progress reports that Clinton is acquiescing to some of the demands of the #BlackLivesMatter contingency regarding mass incarceration of people of color, most particularly young black men, fueled by the desire for profit and for the CCA and GEO to please their shareholders.
“She noted that she specifically wants to focus on ending funding to private prisons as the way to end them,” Deray McKesson said on Twitter. McKesson is an activist known for his large Twitter following and his involvement in the protests in Baltimore and Ferguson, Mo.
Zellie Imani, an activist and teacher, had a more pointed question about the money that private prisons have already allegedly given Clinton.
“We want to talk to her about private prison lobbyists who may have donated money to her campaign,” he said. “What is she going to do about that money? Is she going to return it? Is she going to make an acknowledgement of those funds being donated to her? How can you end private prisons and still take these donations?”
These announcements come in proximity to the time she announced she is hosting an “African Americans for Hillary” event at Clark Atlanta University on the famed Atlanta University Center.
Photo: Deray McKesson Twitter