Corporatism — June 24, 2014 at 12:08 pm

UPDATED: For-profit prison food vendor routinely runs out of food in Michigan prisons


There are four things that, in my opinion, should NEVER be put in the hands of for-profit corporations: healthcare, education, national security, and prisons. Why? Because when a profit motive is involved in anything, corners will always be cut in order to enhance the profitability of the enterprise. And, in these four situations, that means the lives of actual living human beings will be negatively impacted.

Today we have a clear case against the use of for-profit corporations in the delivery of prison services.

Aramark Correctional Services is being threatened with the loss of their state contract to provide prison food services because they routinely run out of food:

The Michigan Department of Corrections has put its new prison food vendor on notice it needs to shape up or risk losing the contract.

Randall Treacher, the department’s chief deputy director, sent Aramark Correctional Services a letter June 6 that said the company — which took over food operations in early December — continues to run out of food too often and make unauthorized substitutions for approved menu items. […]

In March, the department fined Aramark $98,000 for food shortages and unauthorized menu substitutions, which have been linked to prisoner demonstrations at the Kinross Correctional Facility in the Upper Peninsula and other Michigan prisons. […]

Dozens of Aramark workers have been fired and banned from the prison system for transgressions including trying to smuggle marijuana into a prison, showing up drunk for work, and getting too friendly with prisoners.

The Aramark contract eliminated 370 state jobs at an estimated annual savings of $12 million to $16 million.

We’re saving $12-16 million but the men and women in the prisons they serve are not getting enough to eat. That is, at its essence, “cruel and unusual punishment” and is Exhibit A as to how a for-profit motive is harming people. Being in prison does not resign you — at least it SHOULDN’T resign you — to not having enough to eat.


UPDATE: Here’s a photo I was sent a few months back. That’s an Aramark truck parked at a Lion’s Den porn shop. Seems to me Aramark has some HR/hiring issues to resolve…

[CC prison image credit: Hans | Pixabay]