5/12 National Day of Action Against Private Prison Profiteering

Protests Launch National Prison Industry Divestment Campaign

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What: Community and labor groups take to the streets to demand that major shareholders divest their holdings in the Corrections Corporation of America (CCA) and the GEO Group (Geo), private prison companies that run immigrant detention centers and prisons for the U.S. government.

When: Thursday May 12th, 2011

Where:

Community and labor groups are taking to the streets on Thursday, May 12 in five major cities to demand divestment of private and public holdings in the private prison industry. This industry relies on taxpayers for its income by lobbying for harsher immigrant incarceration policies. Such policies drive up prison populations and put added strains on state and federal budgets.

Detentions of immigrants are set to cost taxpayers $ billions this year while profiting Manhattan-based hedge fund managers and other finance industry magnates like Wells Fargo who have significant investments in the private prison industry.

The private prison industry, in league with major investors, is working to increase the criminalization of our communities and thus overpopulation in our prisons, through lobbying efforts that increase penalties and incarcerations by the federal government and by states such as Arizona and Georgia, which recently passed legislation that accelerates the detention of immigrants.

Now they’re conspiring to get states to put more people in jail for longer periods of time, costing tax-payers millions for no justifiable reason which undermines the credibility of our justice system. We can’t let this happen,” said Peter Cervantes-Gautschi of Enlace, an alliance of low-wage labor groups in the U.S. and Mexico.

This group, in partnership with community groups and unions across the US, is calling on all public and private institutions to divest their holdings in Corrections Corporation of America (CCA) and GEO Group, America’s largest private prison corporations which have profited from $ billions in taxpayer money.

Major investors in the private prison industry include Pershing Square Capital Management, Wellington Management Company, Wells Fargo Bank, General Electric and others. The protests coincide with the annual shareholders meeting of CCA in Nashville, TN where one of the protest will take place.

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