These abuses often occur beyond the scrutiny of the public, without meaningful oversight from federal authorities. Furthermore, the Freedom of Information Act “has not been found to apply to records in the possession of the corporations that run the CAR prisons,” notes the study. People displaced from family and friends face exorbitant, and often prohibitive, phone rates just to stay in touch.

“At the CAR prisons we investigated, the prisoners lived day to day not knowing if their basic human needs would be met, whether they would get medical attention if they were hurt or ill,” said Carl Takei, Staff Attorney at the ACLU’s National Prison Project, in a statement about the report. “The Bureau of Prisons creates perverse incentives for the for-profit prison companies to endanger human health and lives.”

In one chilling example of the squalid conditions of life inside these prisons, the report notes:


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