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Department of Justice to end use of private prisons

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Posted at 12:34 PM, Aug 18, 2016
and last updated 2016-08-18 12:35:11-04

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Department of Justice announced Thursday that it will reduce, and eventually end the use of private prisons.

“As you all know, all of the Bureau’s existing contracts with private prison companies are term-limited and subject to renewal or termination. I am directing that, as each contract reaches the end of its term, the Bureau should either decline to renew that contract or substantiall reduce its scope in a manner consistent with law and the overall decline of the Bureau’s inmate population,” Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates said in a memo.

In the memo, Yates says the Bureau declined to renew a contract for approximately 1,200 beds at a private prison three weeks ago. On Thursday, the Bureau amended an existing contract to reduce an upcoming contract from 10,800 beds to a maximum of 3,600.

According to Yates, ending and amending existing contracts will reduce the total private prison population to less than 14,200 inmates by May 1, 2017.