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Largest chapter of Texas prison guard union supports closing private prisons

The president of the largest chapter of the state Texas prison guard union said that the Texas prison system should close all private prisons, according to a report from Fusion on Aug. 25.

Lance Lowry, President of the Huntsville AFSCME Texas Correctional Employees chapter, said in a blog post that closing private prisons is necessary with the state prison system facing millions of dollars in budget cuts. Lowry said that the state should move low-level, nonviolent inmates out of prisons and to parole, probation, or electronic monitoring.

If private prisons are not closed or prisoners moved from those facilities, the budget cuts would stretch correctional officers even thinner without support in overcrowded prisons, he argued.

Lowry said “We’re not running our criminal justice system efficiently. A lot of inmates could be better managed under community supervision.”  

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