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MTC Takes Over Where The GEO Group Left off

6:25 am in Uncategorized by WhyIHateCCA

First published on WhyIHateCCA

After the state of Mississippi announced it was not renewing its contract with the GEO Group (or that the GEO Group bailed on the state, depending on how you see it) following a litany of abuse and mismanagement issues at the prisons it ran for the state, the Department of Corrections needed to bring in another company to operate the private facilities formerly run by them.  Apparently, the state did not consider just hiring additional corrections staff and taking control of the prisons itself.

Into the picture now comes MTC, or Management and Training Corporation, the third-largest private prison operator in the U.S. MTC most recently made headlines as the company in charge of the Kingman prison in Arizona, from which 3 felons (2 convicted murderers) escaped, fled across the country, killed an elderly couple, and stirred up a multi-state manhunt.  Shortly thereafter, an audit found the facility had numerous security flaws that the prisoners exploited in their escape.  This was part of what prompted many advocates to call for a statewide audit of private prisons that found the facilities to cost more than government-operated prisons.  Then Republicans in the state legislature passed a bill to prohibit future audits. Of course.

So this is the company that Mississippi has apparently seen fit to give responsibility for prisoners in the former GEO Group facilities.  MTC will operate 3 prisons for the state; Walnut Grove, East Mississippi CF, and Marshall County CF, while CCA will continue to operate an additional 2 facilities (one of which just suffered a riot).  But many people, including this author, are skeptical that there will be any signifncant improvement at the prisons.  Hopefully, Mississippi will have learned from at least some of its mistakes with the GEO Group, such as not having an enforcement mechanism in the contract to ensure adequate staffing levels.

Meanwhile, it looks like the GEO Group is seeking to expand northward into Canada since its reputation has taken such a hit here, and MTC is focusing their sights on our continental brethren as well.  I just hope the Canadians learn from our mistakes.

GEO Group Fined More Than $100,000

8:35 am in Uncategorized by WhyIHateCCA

First published on WhyIHateCCA

OSHA has fined the GEO Group more than $100,000 for occupational hazards present in the East Mississippi Correctional Facility, one of the prisons it had operated for years before losing its contract with the state in the wake of some terrible abuses that took place in the juvenile detention center they also ran.  Some of the violations at EMCF included malfunctioning locks and staffing levels so low that guards had to conduct head counts of prisoners alone.

 

Mississippi Tosses Private Prison Company, The GEO Group

6:53 am in Uncategorized by WhyIHateCCA

Previously published on WhyIHateCCA

Cell in Alcatraz. Photo by Miss Millions.

Mississippi, of all places, has had enough.  Not exactly known for its hospitable prison system, the state announced last Friday that it intends to terminate its contract with the GEO Group to operate 3 facilities, effective in July.  One of those facilities is Walnut Grove, which was recently the target of a lawsuit that brought sweeping change to the way Mississippi incarcerates its youth.  Plagued with violence, medical neglect, and persistent sexual abuse, the facility’s conditions were so abysmal that the Department of Justice called it “some of the worst abuse” they had seen in any investigation of a prison or jail.  Children housed there used terms like “barbaric,” “a war zone,” and “the deepest depths of hell” to describe it.  The settlement in the lawsuit removed all juveniles from Walnut Grove and mandated that they never be held in solitary confinement.  Lest you feel bad for GEO getting slapped around so hard in the lawsuit, remember that they earned millions of dollars in profit by treating children like shit.

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A Parent’s Worst Nightmare

1:07 pm in Uncategorized by WhyIHateCCA

A Parent’s Worst Nightmare

Continuing with WhyIHateCCA’s guest author series, I present this first-hand account of a father’s struggle to find his son, who was lost in the Mississippi system after suffering brain damage in a riot at the GEO-Group operated Walnut Grove Correctional Facility.  Walnut Grove is currently the target of a lawsuit by the ACLU and the Southern Poverty Law Center over deplorable conditions and abhorrent violence.

by Michael McIntosh

Good Afternoon, My name is Michael McIntosh.  I am the parent of a youth that was attacked, critically injured and then hidden in the system, to keep the incident quiet.

Imagine this…

On a normal visitation day, I was told by the Walnut Grove (WG) staff that my son, who had been there for 3 months, was no longer at the facility.  Walnut Grove is a private juvenile detention center operated by the GEO Group for the Mississippi Department of Corrections. When I reached out for more information of where my son was, they consistently denied knowledge of his whereabouts. How could a child placed in the custody of the MDOC disappear?

After not getting any assistance from WG staff, I was referred to the Warden, who refused to tell me about my son’s whereabouts. After 2 1/2 weeks of MDOC and WG passing the buck back and forth and playing games, I took matters in my own hands and started my own investigation. I realized that they did not care about the well being of my son, nor did they care about me knowing his status. I found out that my son was in the hospital, but no status information was given. I called MDOC and asked the medical department about my son’s status to which I received no response.

A few days later, an MDOC chaplain called to help me with visitation to my son. After 5 1/2 weeks of searching, visitation was granted to me to see my son, but they had moved him to another facility. A new visitation order was granted for a two-hour visit, in which I was only able to spend a half hour with my son. The reason this happened is because I questioned the head nurse about the status of my son; because of her attitude, she called security and told them she felt threatened and needed assistance. Security came to assist her, but it was not the 24-hour security that was already in his room, but rather hospital security. The security officer told me I had to leave, that visitation was over. Keep in mind that this was more than a month after the incident.

The next day I called the chaplain back, explained what happened and asked for another visitation with my son. On Friday of the following week the head doctor of MDOC called and I was told no further visitation will be granted and the visitation that I was granted was done as a favor to me.  I was forced to wait until my son was granted visitation rights by MDOC. My son was transferred to Parchman hospital where he received no medical treatment.

After four to six weeks, he was released from the Parchman hospital, and he was transferred to a drug and alcohol facility at Parchman though he does not have a problem with either. He has yet to receive treatment that addresses his injuries even though many request have been made for treatment. He is an underage inmate at Parchman, put there and left there so that this incident would not be known. My son had been assaulted in a riot at the Walnut Grove YCF in which he received brain damage, but has still not received proper medical treatment for what he experienced

A Dose of His Own Medicine

12:55 pm in Uncategorized by WhyIHateCCA

A Dose of His Own Medicine

Remember Mark Ciavarella, the judge from Pennsylvania who received millions of dollars in bribes from a private prison operator to sentence undeserving children to that private prison?  His conviction resulted in the dismissal of over 4,000 convictions of juveniles, as the court saw the obvious corruption and conflict of interest in his decisions.

Well thankfully that slimy piece of shit just got 28 years in prison.

Despicable

10:34 am in Uncategorized by WhyIHateCCA

Despicable

Quick link here to a heartbreaking story of a kid who was badly assaulted in a riot at the Walnut Grove YCF in Mississippi, resulting in severe brain damage, and his father’s quest to find answers from the GEO Group, who operates the prison. Very poorly, I might add.

This prison has been described as “the deepest depths of hell.” Situations like this beg the question of what do we really want from a criminal justice system. Do we want a system that sells off correctional services to the highest bidder? Do we want a system in which human lives and freedom are nothing but commodities? Can anyone suggest that outsourcing correctional services to a private corporation whose primary and secondary goals are both profit, is a good idea? Can anyone tell me that these children, CHILDREN, deserve to suffer like this?

It’s a shame and it saddens me to know that, of all places, the United States subjects its own citizens to torture like this, all so that some big corporate greedy assholes can make a few bucks. This is beyond despicable. It’s embarrassing. There is absolutely no excuse for our elected leaders to subject people to situations like this.