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Walker Replacing Union Workers For Prison Workers.. UGH!

By lizbethie - Posted on 10 July 2011


This is apparently something that started several years ago..


This is a very frightening situation.  Not just what it means to the Amercian worker but what it means in terms of morality and human slavery being incorporated in a new and legal way in our country.  I have noticed this is a big piece of several states budgets.  They are of course touting it as a great way to cut the budget of the state by privatizing prisons.  But, this trend is down right frightening!

Hmm. This is one of those sticky ones.

On the one hand, I'm happy about eliminating any job which is supposedly "union only". Unions should not have a monopoly any more than should any given corporation, except in very limited circumstances.

However, inmates should defintely be paid for their labor. That is part of being rehabilitated, IMO. Minimum wage would be a good start, but even some majority percentage of minimum wage, or minimum wage minus some amount for room and board, would be more positive.

I thought that it had been declared unconstitutional to pay them nothing? I'm too lazy to look it up however.

A problem I have with paying inmates minimum wage is that there are people out there who can't get any job-- even a minimum wage job. You start paying people $7.25 an hour for 40 .hours of work a week, and jail might not seem so bad (I'm serious). It'd be like that guy who recently held up a bank to get the healthcare.

Fair point, but I DID say "some percentage of minimum wage" or minimum wage minus room and board.

People who have wronged society should learn the positive aspects of working for a living, and earning some wages above a pittance (and minimum wage is practically a pittance) should be a part of that.


Ah, right. I'm sure that someone has already done the math to "prove" that they're already getting minimum wage + room and board (and medical coverage, which'll run 5-10k a year for a young, relatively healthy male).


Did you read the whole second article?  It's chilling!

Yes, I read both articles. There were parts which bothered me a bit. What's so chilling about it though?

Gonna go re-read it now in case I missed something. Part of it might be the tone in which it's written though.

Edit: Okay, I haven't read the second article entirely yet. Working on it.

A couple of things to think about....

In most states, prisoners do a lot of highway work, clean-up etc.  If the prisons are privatized, who will do it, and will the company charge the states inflated rates for the work, thereby negating the so-called savings?

Across the country, as Republican legislatures are privatizing prisons, they will be making it profitable to arrest and sentence people to the maximum amount of time. The US already incarcerates more people than any other country in the world.  Now it could become worse as corporations and politicians profit from it.

I think you're already seeing this.

Thank you for posting this!  The post did not say who posted it?  But, ty.. whoever you are...

This is exactly the type of frightening situation we are going to unleash if prisoners are sent out to make private money for private corportations.  That is nothing short of slavery!  Listen, I have absolutely no beef at all with prisoners doing work.. doing community work for the public good.  I am firm believer in community service.  But, this scenario is a dangerous road!  I really don't like the idea of prisons being privatized, when the judicial system (any part) leaves the bounds of "we The people" we no longer have a collective investment in a fair and just legal system.  Not to even mention the incentive to incarcerate people for profit!   Add in the how this will affect average Amercian people looking for good paying jobs.. and it's a trifecta catastrophe!

This happened in PA. My cousin was sent to one of these privately owned juvenile detention centers when he was taken away from his mother. He was there for 8 months until my aunt got custody.

Also, consider this as well:

It's big business and the taxpayer foots the bill. 


Wow  i am amazed that  these ideas are being entertained by so called leaders. I agree with the answer that this will take away the  " We the People " Priniciple in a fair and just judicial system. Also, it's scary that Mrs. or Miss Bachman is being considered a serious candiddate with the fact  that she  signed or stated some type of agreement that blacks were better off as slaves!  are we going bakwards? is there a movement towards resegregation? or are we suffering growing pains in hopes that the chips will fall in the right place? it is scary!  

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