Arizona has enthusiastically embraced prison privatization, with 13% of the state prison population housed in private facilities (the 11th highest percentage in the nation). Motivated by a belief that private enterprise could build and manage prisons safely and at lower cost than the state, the legislature has mandated construction of thousands of private prison beds. Little was done over the years to test actual performance of private prisons or to determine their cost effectiveness.
February 15, 2012 the American Friends Service Committee’s Arizona office released an extensive report reviewing the safety, quality, and cost of private prisons in Arizona – including six prisons operated by Corrections Corporation of America but not under contract with the state. The report reveals widespread and persistent problems in private facilities around safety, lack of accountability, and cost.
For decades, the American Friends Service Committee has worked with immigrants and prisoners in this nation, highlighting the often malicious treatment they face. In 2011, the private prison industry advocated for increasing detentions in many states. AFSC’s research has shown that private prisons have little accountability and poor safety conditions. We oppose profiting off human misery, and have worked to improve prison conditions and reduce the number of people detained.
This document asks the Court to stop the Department of Corrections from awarding the contracts for new private prisons while our appeal is pending. We don’t know when the appeal will be heard. Since the whole point of our suit is to halt the contracts, it would be fruitless if the DOC signed contracts before we got our ‘day in court’ for the appeal.
The Notice of Appeal transfers jurisdiction from the trial court (which dismissed our original suit) to the appeals court, and signals the clerk to transcribe all the recordings of court proceedings to transmit to the appeals court.
AFSC is a Quaker organization devoted to service, development, and peace programs throughout the world. Our work is based on the belief in the worth of every person, and faith in the power of love to overcome violence and injustice. Learn more
Where we work
AFSC has offices around the world. To see a complete list see the Where We Work page.