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Essay Paper on Consulting Firm for a Private Prison

This paper is intended to contemplate private prisons as compared to publicly operated ones and to make conclusions as to the necessary measures to be taken to make these private prisons appropriate according to the state laws in means of custody of inmates as well as security questions. The paper is written in the form of a summary of the advice given by the consulting firm to an owner or an establisher of some private prison.

As far as private prisons are concerned, it is important to mention that this industry started developing in the middle of the 1980-s. It happened when there appeared Corrections Corporation of America which suggested a lease of the Tennessee prison system in response to establishing strict standards for prison conditions set by the federal judge. Nowadays, privately-operated prisons have become quite a widespread phenomenon and they do not only offer the possibility to accommodate certain amounts of prisoners (usually from 800 to 1000 people) but also to make them work. There is evidence that private prisons become “major manufacturers and suppliers of day labor.” Each state where such private prisons are situated can empower a state board of correction to determine whether the necessary facilities are available or not and then if state facilities are not available – to “enter into an agreement with the proper authorities of the United States, another state, a political subdivision of this state or another state, or a private prison contractor, to provide for the safekeeping, care, subsistence, proper government, discipline, and to provide programs for the reformation, rehabilitation and treatment of prisoners.”

From the studies it also known that private prisons in general operate in the same way as publicly operated prisons do when program and work participation of the prisoners as well as the distribution of staff by the key functional areas is considered. The shortage lies in lower staffing levels (when compared to the state prisons), lack of management information system (MIS) support, and in “higher rate of assaults on staff and inmates.”

Thus, in order to create privately operated prisons which has all the necessary conditions for keeping the inmates the private organizations are supposed to consult some consulting companies in order to take all the appropriate steps. The questions which should be discussed consist in custody setting up and in establishing proper security for such type of prison as a private one.

Each state in the USA has got its own legislation regarding keeping the inmates. Thus, any consulting company will refer to the state laws when counseling the private prison owners. For instance, services which are parts of the custody are as follows: housing, mental health services, nursing home care and halfway house placement, as well as alcohol and drug treatment. Beside that, educational and vocational programs can be implemented as well as inmates’ employment within prisons. Also, such questions as proper food, medical care and clothing cannot be disregarded. If these issues are addressed properly, and the necessary steps are taken, the prisoners will feel more comfortable in private prisons than in publicly operated ones.

On the other hand, when security is considered, this issue is more problematic within private prisons. As far as private prisons are created usually to imprison minimum security offenders, the security can be at a low level – because there is no need in stricter security there. But, as it is evident, there are no grounds for taking the edge off the security levels. Thus, correctional officers are still supposed to be not only best-trained to be able to provide a good level of security but to be ready to react to force major circumstances and to be sensitive to all conditions. As for the emergency response teams, they are also necessary to be present in private prisons as they can quickly and effectively react if riots raise. Internal and perimeter security is to be prorated – it is essential for the prison to exercise its functions and to provide public peace and security.

If all the above mentioned issues are cared for, the private prison is to succeed…

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