Civil Rights

Biden Orders End to Private Prison Contracts

Written by SK Ashby

Elections have consequences.

President Biden is resurrecting several Obama-era policies aimed at reducing policy brutality and ending the perverse incentive to imprison more people for profit.

Biden is signing an executive order directing the Department of Justice stop contracting with private prisons.

President Joe Biden is directing the Justice Department to not renew contracts with private prisons, as part of a slew of executive orders focused on racial equity he is signing Tuesday.

The Biden administration will not enter new contracts with private prisons, according to a senior administration official. The Biden administration has not yet released the text of the order.

Biden is also planning to sign an executive order to reimpose limits on military transfers to police departments.

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Joe Biden is poised to issue executive actions as soon as Tuesday scaling back the use of private prisons and placing new limits on the transfer of military equipment to local law enforcement, according to a person familiar with the matter and a planning document. [...]

The Obama-era policy placed limits on the types of equipment police departments could receive, and required them to justify the need for items like helicopters, riot helmets and “flash-bang” grenades.

These orders do not apply to the Department of Homeland Security and the private companies they do business with, unfortunately, but I think there's good reason for that.

New limits on immigrant detention and the use of private prisons will likely be paired with a larger push for comprehensive immigration reform. I suspect it would be difficult to do one without the other. It will also take time to slowly empty out the facilities and vacate procedures used by the Trump regime that resulted in a massive expansion of private prison capacity.

There's no silver bullet or executive order that will eliminate institutions of white supremacy created by Trump and all those that came before him, but every action will add up to something more comprehensive over time.