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Private contractors paid millions to run UK detention centres

The British government has paid hundreds of millions of pounds to private contractors to run its detention facilities, but no one knows for certain just how profitable the industry is. “One of the 10 UK facilities is run by Her Majesty’s Prison and Probation Service, but the rest are contracted out to outsourcing firms G4S, Mitie, Serco and the US-owned GEO Group. (…) Commercial confidentiality agreements mean the Home Office and outsourcing companies are not obliged to publish detailed financial information about immigration detention centers in the UK. But figures released under freedom of information laws and published on the government’s Contracts Finder website show the value of some contracts when they were awarded. (…) The profitability of detention facilities has proved to be a contentious issue for the contractors. A Guardian investigation last year pointed to a 20.7% profit margin at the G4S-owned Brook House in 2016, while at Tinsley House the margin was 41.5%. (…) GEO Group, which operates Dungavel House, Scotland’s only detention center, may be making up to 30% profits on its contract, according to an analysis by Corporate Watch.”

A Minister who strongly defended a private prison pays a heavy political price

A Minister who strongly defended a private prison pays a heavy political price. “Worse than that, actually. Within days of that speech, the Corrections Department had stepped in to take over the running of the prison again. By December, Serco had lost the contract to run Mt Eden. And Lotu-Iiga was dumped as minister. It was a bloody demise for both Serco and Lotu-Iiga as months of anguish and allegations about Mt Eden spewed forth in Parliament and the media. But did the scandal mask wider problems going on in the prison system?”

Source: assets.stuff.co.nz

Minister must stop prison privatisation failure

Labour Corrections spokesperson Kelvin Davis says “the government’s announcement that Serco will pay back some of the profits made from mismanaging our prisons is confirmation that National’s privatisation experiment is a complete failure.” Davis declared that the minister “should confirm that she’s not going to carry on with National’s privatisation agenda and place Mt. Eden Corrections Facility under Government control.”

Source: www.scoop.co.nz