State of Texas: The Private Prison Bubble Bursts

Patrick Michels

These are tough times to be a private prison operator. In August, the U.S. Department of Justice said it would phase out its contracts with for-profit prisons, citing safety concerns, low quality of care and high costs. Shortly after that, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security announced that it would “review” whether to maintain its immigrant detention contracts. Activists celebrated the news and the stocks of private prison companies plummeted. Texas has been host to many of the facilities that could be closed, though they represent just a fraction of all the private prisons in Texas.

state of texas private prison by the numbers
Illustration by Joanna Wojitkowiak
Do you think free access to journalism like this is important?
The Texas Observer depends on support from its members to keep telling stories like the one you are reading now. This fall we're looking for 200 more sustaining members—people like you who can give us as little as $0.99 per month. Your membership means we can continue shedding light on issues that might otherwise go unreported. Can we count on you?


Patrick Michels, a former Observer staff writer, is a reporter at the Center for Investigative Reporting.


You May Also Like:

Top