It’s no secret that the prison system in the United States is a huge industry. Corporations own private prisons making billions of dollars on detaining people. A report released a couple months ago details that prisons generate an estimated $74 billion dollars. Each inmate costs around $14,000 to $60,000. So it makes sense that the country would rather arrest than not. Imagine if prisons had less inmates? Investors would be certainly angry about losing money. Immigration detention centers are also making big bucks these days.
A new analysis shows that immigration detention centers have seen a surge in their bottom line, and are making billions of dollars. The Associated Press reports that grants by the U.S. Health and Human Services (HHS) has increased from $74.5 million in 2007 to $958 million in 2017. All of the grants go towards shelters, foster care and other child welfare services.
An HHS official said that the grants are based on the number of beds needed. Since the U.S. is detaining more families at a higher rate, they are in more need of beds, which means the companies that provide the shelters are getting big bucks.
The report shows that 11,800 children are currently being housed in about 90 facilities around the country.
Southwest Key — which has been building new centers in Texas to keep up with demands — has been getting the highest grant funding. Since 2008 they’ve gotten about $1.39 billion dollars.
Other facilitates making money include Baptist Child & Family Services, which has gotten $942 million, and Educational Services has gotten $72 million in the last year.
The report by the AP does not take into account facilities that have allegedly been housing children without proper licensing.