Tag Archives: public records

Private Prison Information Act of 2017

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(From Human Rights Defense Center)

45 civil rights and criminal justice groups joined together to demand greater transparency from private prisons that contract with the federal government. H.R. 1980, the Private Prison Information Act, reintroduced by U.S. Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-Texas) earlier this year  would require private prisons to comply with the same FOIA requirements as their government-operated counterparts.

Almost one out of every five prisoners held by the federal government, and two out of every three immigrant detainees, are housed in for-profit prisons that contract with federal agencies. Unlike government-operated facilities that are required to comply with federal Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests, private prisons operate under a veil of secrecy.

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Public Records Act Challenges

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The California Public Records Act is a crucial piece of legislation for journalists and activists. The 1968 law, modeled on the federal Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) promoted maximum public disclosure based on the “The people have the right of access to information concerning the conduct of the people’s business” statement contained in the California State Constitution.

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