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The Prison Industrial Complex: Does It Create A New Form Of Slavery? How Much Labor Is Done By Prisoners In The System?

Cold blooded utilization of Human Labor!

There are many organizations which have criticized what they see as a new structure, which exploits human beings in the United States. These organizations include Human Rights groups as well as Political and Social groups.

The complaints entail the use of the United States prison population, amounting to about two million people (many Black and Hispanic) to work for a range of industries for nickels and dimes.

For the business moguls that have participated in prison labor schemes, it is like they continuously hit the lottery.

The workers are unable to strike, there is no need to pay unemployment insurance. There is no need to cover vacation pay or workman's compensation bills.

The workers pull full-time shifts, they never arrive late for work. They also never call in absent due to family emergencies.

Even better then all this is that if the workers are not happy with their twenty five cents an hour job, they can be locked up in secluded cells.


The prison population is rising dramatically!

The United States incarcerates about two million inmates in State, Federal, and Private prisons all over the country.

There has never been an instance in the history of humanity that a country has caged so many of its own citizens.

The numbers do not lie! The United States has jailed more people than any other country on the globe. China has a population that exceeds the United States population by five times more than the United States.

Even though only five percent of the people on the planet reside in the United States, the United States confines twenty five percent of the globe's prison population.

In 1972 the United States prison population was around three hundred thousand, there was over one million incarcerated by 1990. The prison population rose to over two million by the year 2000.

There was only five private prisons in the country ten years ago holding a prison population of around two thousand. Now there are over one hundred private prisons exceeding sixty two thousand prisoners.

Within the next ten years that number will reach an astounding three hundred and sixty thousand inmates according to current trends.

Prisons, Corporate America , Shopping and You

Why have the number of prisoners increased?

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What has changed in the American society in the past ten years? Why has there been such an increase of citizens incarcerated?

Private prisons subcontracting prisoners to work encourages reasons to have people locked up. These prisons have come to require the income from prison labor!

The commercial investors that make a profit off of the labor of prisoners also spend a huge amount of money to lobby for longer prison sentences, they do this to increase their labor force.

The Prison Industrial Complex provides for itself. There are some opponents of prisoner labor who compare the United States Prison Labor Camps as an imitation of the actions perpetrated by Nazi Germany, comparing the forced labor and concentration camps.

The United States Prison Industrial Complex is one of the most rapidly growing industries in the United States and the people who invest in this industry reside on Wall street.

This industry has profits in the mega millions and even holds its own trade exhibitions, conventions, websites, and even send out mail order and Internet catalogs.

The industry actually participates in Direct Advertising campaigns. Companies that are solicited includes construction companies, architecture companies, even investment firms on Wall street. they also solicit businesses such as plumbing supply companies, food supply companies, armed security and even padded cells in a great diversity of colors.

Privatized Prisons and Prison Labor IS Slavery

What kind of jobs do prisoners get?

As stated by many opponents, the Federal Prison Complex produces one hundred percent of all military helmets, ammunition belts, bullet proof vests, Identification tags, shirts, pants tents, bags and even canteens.

Not only are prisoners used to manufacture military equipment, prison workers provide ninety eight percent of the total market for equipment assembly services. They produce ninety three percent of paints and paintbrushes, ninety two percent of stove assemblies, forty six percent of body armor, thirty six percent of all home appliances, thirty percent of all microphones, headphones, and speakers, and they even manufacture twenty one percent of all office furniture.

Everything from parts for airplanes to medical supplies, prisoners produce even more than this, they are even used to train seeing eye dogs for the blind.


The history of prison labor in the United States!

The use of prisoners as units of labor has its origins in the Institution of Slavery. After the Civil War (1861-1865) an organization of hiring out prisoners was introduced to the Country to maintain the tradition of slavery.

Once the slaves aquired their Freedom, many were charged with not fulfilling their Sharecropping obligations. Sharecropping is the cultivation of the land belonging to another for a share of part of the harvest.

Many others were charged with petty theft, most cases were never proven. After being convicted these prisoners were hired out to pick cotton, or to work in the mining industry and even aiding to build the countries railway system.

Between 1870 and 1910 the State of Georgia hired out convicts that consisted of eighty eight percent of black prisoners!

The State of Alabama hired out prisoners to work in mines, ninety three percent being black!

The State of Mississippi constructed an enormous prison farm, being very similar to the older Slave Plantations except the slaves were replaced with convicts.

This infamous Parchman Plantation remained in existence until the year 1972!

DOD & the Federal Prison Industries

Who would use prison labor?

Throughout the years following the Civil War, the Jim Crow racial segregation laws were enforced in every State. The segregation of schools , housing, and even marriages as well as many other features of everyday life were affected by the Jim Crow Laws.

Jump to present time and you will notice a modern set of obvious racist laws carrying out slave labor and sweatshops within the criminal justice system, also known as the Prison Industrial Complex.

Who would invest in this kind of prison/slave labor schemes?

There are currently at least thirty seven states that have sanctioned the outsourcing of prison labor by private corporations that base their businesses within our state prison system.

The list of companies participating in this kind of labor schemes comprise some of the United States leading corporations.

IBM, Boeing, Motorola, Microsoft, AT&T, Wireless, Texas Instrument, Dell, Compaq, Honeywell, Hewlett-Packard, Nortel, Lucent Technologies, 3Com, Intel, Northern Telecom, TWA, Nordstrom's, Revlon, Macy's, Pierre Cardin, Target Stores, among many others.

Each and every one of these businesses are thrilled about the financial success produced by prison labor.

In the years between 1980 and 1994 the corporate profits rose from $392 million to an astounding $1.32 billion!


What kind of pay do the prisoners receive?

In some State penitentiaries the prisoners will receive the minimum wage for their labor, but not in all States. Colorado pays about two dollars an hour, ridiculously under the minimum wage.

In a private run prison, the convicts can be given as little as seventeen cents an hour for a six day work week resulting in the earnings of around twenty dollars a month!

The private prison with the highest prisoner wages is the CCA in Tennessee, prisoners there can receive fifty cents for an hours work if they are determined to be "highly skilled".

Working for these rates it is understandable why inmates would rather be incarcerated in Federal prisons, where the pay is so much higher.

In a Federal prison the convict can earn $1.25 an hour for an eight hour workday and occasionally they will even get overtime pay. This enables the prisoner to have $200 to $300 a month to send back home.

Due to the introduction of prison labor, the United States has again become an appealing location for investment in jobs that were designated for the Third World labor markets.

There are some companies that have managed assembly plants in Mexico near the border of the United states that have closed down their Mexican plants. These jobs have been transferred to San Quentin State Prison in California.

In the State of Texas, one factory laid off all of its 150 workers and contracted the labor of prisoners within the private Lockhart Texas prison. Inside this prison circuit boards are manufactured for companies like IBM and Compaq.

An Oregon representative recently advocated to the Nike company to slow down its production in Indonesia and instead bring these jobs to his State. He tried to persuade the shoemaker by explaining how much Nike could save in transporting their shoes into America, he also emphasized that the cost of labor would be about the same or less then Nike was paying their Indonesian employees.


The materials available on this hub are for informational purposes only and not for the purpose of providing legal advice. You should contact your attorney to obtain advice with respect to any particular issue or problem. All materiel are copyrighted properties of the author and may not be used without permission of the author.

To read more articles by Reality Bytes!


Hendrika from Pretoria, South Africa on October 31, 2014:

This is bad. I am not sure about the conditions in our prisons in South Africa, but because of the problem of poverty you find people committing crime simply to go to jail because they have a better life there than at home. Enough food, warm clothes and beds, even television!

Wesman Todd Shaw from Kaufman, Texas on June 07, 2014:

Well done, the merger of state and corporate power is fascism, and that's what the private prison industry is - bribing politicians to maintain prisoner quotas for profits.

Debra Allen from West By God on June 23, 2013:

I am now writing the memoirs of someone who has been in prison for 15 years. You can find it here:

Pat on June 23, 2013:

Worse than the 1800's slavery in that these slaves are kept in cages at might, and overseers are paid to keep the slaves.

fburns on June 11, 2013:

Of course there are white people in prisons too, but they did a lot more than possess a drug.

Alex Munkachy from Honolulu, Hawaii on May 05, 2013:

Most people are put in prison because they did something wrong, therefore it should be a punishment.

Debra Allen from West By God on March 17, 2013:

Just got this news and think it really does work that way.:

Debra Allen from West By God on February 10, 2013:

Well I got a comment on this on FB and they brought up something else. They said that slavery isn't only there as much as it it holding the lower class just where it is with the minimum wage and the middle class paying for everyone. That is slavery too.

Debra Allen from West By God on February 09, 2013:

Oh I understand where you are. I am in the Mid-Atlantic and we just missed the snow storm that you guys got.

Well I don't know what else to say because I don't think anything is going to be done about it. It seems like it is a lucrative "business". Do speak your mind though! The truth always comes out...eventually. I will do my part and share it all over the places that I can for you too.

Reality Bytes (author) from Freeman On The Land United States of America. on February 09, 2013:

Lady Guinevere, sry I just regained power a few hours ago. I am in the Northeast.

Alot of the inmates being used for labor already have skills, this is why they are relocated to for profit prisons.

I thought prison industrial complex designated an industry, not just a penal system. Although it would be nice to teach criminals a trade so they can gain employment, there are law abiding citizens that could use the same assistance.

Also, many immigrants cross the border hoping to gain access to three squares, shelter, clothing, medical care, and some pennies to send home. It is sad that the United States prison system is desirable to some. One way for an immigrant to access legal employment in our borders.

This system is already being abused IMO, it is a dirty little secret that the United States has, when there is profit to be made, corroption will ensue.

NotPC on February 08, 2013:

After reading your article I was motivated to do more research as I definitely agree with your points. Economic benefits are a terrible motivational factor in our country. If having more prisoners is beneficial, then there is a hidden motivation to incarcerate more people for increasingly less criminal acts. Dr. Paul Craig Roberts is an expert on this topic and wrote an article a few days ago detailing the current Police State agenda of the United States.

Debra Allen from West By God on February 07, 2013:

I have read the hub and the comments and I am sitting in the middle. I know of 3 people that are or were incarcerated. One deserves to rot in He**, the other one needed to be somewhere else and the last one, he is in there because of a domestic issue. One got out and is doing well only because she is young. There were no jobs where she was at. The first one needs to stay where he is at and rot there. The last one is there until his kids grow up and they never see him, nor him see them ever again. He did have a job to get something when he is released, but he lost that when they moved him to another prison.

What the heck are these people supposed to do when their sentence is up? They have absolutely no skills while in there. The day that they get set free, what do you suppose they are supposed to do if they have no family or job skills or a place to live?

You talk about all this in a private prison...then you should say that in your article and in your title.

I still sit on the fence with this as you see I have had 3 totally different relationships with prisons-ers.

Reality Bytes (author) from Freeman On The Land United States of America. on February 07, 2013:

When I hear politicians make statements like:

"I want to get tough on crime!"


"I am going to bring manufacturing jobs back to America."

I know that is double speak for, "I support for profit prisons and am going to guarantee they maintain a steady work force!'

That is the reason that the U.S. has the highest percent of its population incarcerated. Higher than the most oppresive dictatorship on the planet. People are incarcerated for crimes that harm none and cause no loss. Not only can an American be detained for crimes they MAY commit, they can be killed for them as well, without trial, without question, without evidence. Oh, the police state is established. It is accumulating the proper legal authority for itself, unimpeded by the people, the court systems, or the peoples representatives.

It seems that as long as they provide bread & circuses to distract the people, their plan will not be interrupted. Only through a sharing of knowledge, the creation of doubt in the minds of the masses, do we even have a chance to avoid complete tyranny.

MissJamieD from Minnes-O-ta on February 06, 2013:

Absolutely I agree that these corporations are getting rich off of people committing crimes, it's outlandish!! All prisoners should have to work their asses off doing something that helps our country, and they should get paid NOTHING. They had the opportunity to make money when they were outside.

I do suppose the corporations are receiving these services for free then, but the law should state that if you employ a prisoner, half of their pay must be paid to the victims or victims families.

Or, just simply don't allow them to be employed doing things that benefit anyone but their state, country, or the victims of their crimes. For instance, community service. They clean up the streets, they plant flowers in the cities, they wash windows of the city buildings, they paint the sidewalks, they work for Habitat for Humanity, things of that nature.

Reality Bytes (author) from Freeman On The Land United States of America. on February 06, 2013:

MissJamieD ,

I agree, the prisoners deserve punishment. Should that punishment include allowing a corporation larger profits by diminishing employment for law abiding citizens?

I know many honest people that would like to be punished with employment. Do they need to be incarcerated to be employed by these corporations?

Do you think that laws are passed for the sole purpose of providing qualified applicants to these profiteers of forced labor?

There are kickbacks to the states and counties to transfer their inmates to these work facilities. Many are getting rich off of the committing of crimes and the punishment that ensues. Do you you not think that there is several layers of corruption from this?

How about compensating these inmates with a standard wage and confiscate the inmates pay to reimburse the victims?

MissJamieD from Minnes-O-ta on February 05, 2013:

Each prisoner, depending on length of stay, costs the country over a million dollars a year!! So, we need to have them doing the work for free!! They don't deserve to have a paying job and if they have people at home that need money, those people need to move on from their incarcerated welfare check and get their own job! Not only that, give them jobs that the general population can't/chooses not to do. The worst jobs out there, maybe they won't be stuck back in prison the next time they're let out. That's one less crime committed against another innocent person in the future. Make prison hell, not heaven. The world will be a better place.

Don't get me wrong, I love your hub. It opened my eyes to something I'd never seen before. Good job:)

BILAL MUHAMMAD on September 18, 2012:

13th amendment of the US Constitution. Read it for yourself. Slavery was never completely abolished. Now you know why 13 is an unlucky number.

Reality Bytes (author) from Freeman On The Land United States of America. on August 31, 2012:

Elsie Parker, I replied earlier but for some reason my comment is not here?

I do not see a problem with having inmates working. The problem lies with for profit private prisons using prisoner labor and paying pennies for it. The inmates do not need to be compensated, their income can be used to help the victims of their crimes.

Jobs are not leaving the country as much as they are being brought in to the prison systems. Some of these prisons reward the counties, states, etc.. for the transfer of prisoners to profit from their labor. This leaves much room for abuses and incarceration of individuals simply for the purpose of profit. Do you realize that many call centers are now utilizing prison labor to handle their support lines? Do you really want an inmate to deal with you on sensitive issues in your life?

There is something wrong when a free country holds the highest percentage of its population in detention. The most tyrannical nation on the planet has less percentage of its population incarcerated then the United States.

It is now suspicious to hear a politician speak of greater sentencing for crimes when there is a possibility that the politician is invested in these for profit prisons. It is a system that can be too easily abused. However much I do not want to use Nazi analogies, I feel I must. Nazi Germany waged a war based on prisoner labor....jus sayin.

Thank you for your intelligent comments. I enjoy engaging in civil discussions!

Elsie Parker on August 28, 2012:

The only modern day slavery we have is those that are stuck in the slave mentality. If the prison system is a slave house... why we ALL not in there then? This isn't rocket science.... Here's the definition....



A person who is the legal property of another and is forced to obey them.

ACTUAL slaves were not slaves just because they did something wrong and were imprisoned... ACTUAL SLAVES had no choice. We have a choice to do right and not get locked up. So when folks get though trying to justify why the prison system is so called slavery, They possibly need to re-study what an ACTUAL slave was. Y'all are just giving people an excuse when if given the chance, they would rob and kill your silly butts. All I can do is smh at the notion that there are seemingly intelligent people out there spreading this foolish mind-frame.

Elsie Parker on August 28, 2012:

Not true at all... The public are paying for their room, board, meals, hygiene, in some cases education, legal fees, and other things that we as tax payers pay for when we pay our taxes all because the people wanted to rob, steal, kill or d

estroy something or someone. They are not being slaves, they are working for what we are paying for. Just like I work for my room, board, hygiene, education and other needs. People need to quit with this foolishness that them having to work while locked up is slavery. Oh my bad, yeah, they supposed to just sit up doing nothing all day or playing cards, dominoes or basketball or whatever while I'm working my ass off to pay taxes that accommodate them. No one PUT them there, they did something wrong to be put there. Hell, maybe if they worked honestly instead of doing what sent them to prison they wouldn't have to be in prison being forced to work..... Maybe if they worked honestly by choice they wouldn't have to work by force. Y'all throw this slavery word around too much and distorts the idea of what those actual slaves went through. Folks seem to think everything thats not in agreement with them is got something to do with slavery and really need to stop the idiocy. For real

jane on August 16, 2012:

So, this is how Romney is going to create 12 million jobs.

Sheri on July 04, 2012:

I could not agree with you more, Terry. And the more research I conduct on "for-profit" prisons, is where "we the people" should direct our so-called anger or out-rage. Slavery is non-discriminate in the 21st century. They figured out a way to capitalize on it; creating a billion-dollar "for-profit" industry hidden behind prison doors. It is a very sad and corrupt world we live in...

Terry on May 03, 2012:

The sad part is that the goal of the prison system has become to increase the prison population and make a profit; not to prevent crime. The current method of punishing people in this way has never worked and will never work. It simply creates better and more hardened criminals. Of course, that is exactly what the industry wants.

Reality Bytes (author) from Freeman On The Land United States of America. on December 08, 2011:

These same companies lobby for stricter sentencing for more slaves(prisoners). They even kickback money to the counties that supply the slaves.

Reality Bytes (author) from Freeman On The Land United States of America. on December 07, 2011:


You can read through this...

I do not distrubute my e-mail.

LT on January 09, 2011:

"Not only are prisoners used to manufacture military equipment, prison workers provide ninety eight percent of the total market for equipment assembly services. They produce ninety three percent of paints and paintbrushes, ninety two percent of stove assemblies, forty six percent of body armor, thirty six percent of all home appliances, thirty percent of all microphones, headphones, and speakers, and they even manufacture twenty one percent of all office furniture."

These numbers would be of great use to me. Would be happy if you sent me the (academic) source(s).


Reality Bytes (author) from Freeman On The Land United States of America. on December 03, 2010:

SURNUFF Thank you for the comment. It adds so much value to my hub.

SURNUFF on December 02, 2010:

New York prisoners makes all the highway signs. in every state from New York to Flordia. all I95s. the street lamps in every town. and all the furniture in the court houses throughout the states. and all the furniture in the jails and prison. It just goes to show, you can teach anyone how to work. you do it in jail, by giving the inmates something serious to do. the government hide the jobs inside the prisons. New York just came up with this new rule. the street signs has to be changed all 80 million of them. so now we knew they are going to start arresting people and framing them for years. making sure they get enough inmates to start on them 80 million street signs that has to be made. where is the factory that these signs are going to be made at???? prison where the machines are already in place. The people should start applying on line for the jobs now and see what the state say. If you want a street sign go on line to and you will see mayor bloomberg grining waiting to sell you office chairs,desk,street lights,stop signs,cloths. treason on the people. THE PEOPLE NEED TO STAND UP AND SAY WE NEED THOSE JOBS OUT IN THE FREE WORLD. THEN YOU WILL SEE, they will to fight you. and still pretend theres no jobs (sic) yes that is slavery. god is coming though. you see the prison population in down, we are going to keep a close eye on arrests, time giving out,what prisons they are sent to,what factorys are in that prison. we need a count!

Reality Bytes (author) from Freeman On The Land United States of America. on November 06, 2010:

onegoodwoman I could care less about the prisoners. I am concerned with the growing unemployment rate and the rise in prison labor.

There are many people who are incarcerated for petty crimes, that do not belong in prison. Increasing sentencing only broadens the prison work force.

onegoodwoman from A small southern town on November 05, 2010:


It does seem as though I missed some info....perhaps I forwarded the page down too qickly, perhaps, I was too tired to absorb what I was reading.....either way, that is my error....

After a second reading, I am not sure that I agree with where your anger is directed.

The concern for the jobs lost within the communties is justified.

The indignity of a prisoner having to work is not one that I share. I stand behind my original thought. They are there for committing crimes. My sympathies do not lie there.

While corporations may be guilty of underhanded deals and under table tactics ( which they should answer for), they did not entice others to committ crimes against society. While they may be exploiting the situation, they did not create the crimminal.

Robert Sloan on November 05, 2010:

The PIE program was designed to "level the playing field" between private sector manufacturing and prison manufacturing. One of the criteria is paying the inmates prevailing wages for their labor. 80% of most inmate's wages are taken back from them to offset taxpayer costs of incarceration, victim restitution, etc. Prison industries are not paying full wages. They pay minimum wage or less, thus reducing the amount taken out for cost of incarceration. The reduced wages turn into profits for the corporations, and taxpayers make up the difference in appropriation the following year. Corporate profits increase at the expense of the taxpayers.

Reality Bytes (author) from Freeman On The Land United States of America. on November 05, 2010:


"The Federal Prison Complex produces one hundred percent of all military helmets, ammunition belts, bullet proof vests, Identification tags, shirts, pants tents, bags and even canteens.

Not only are prisoners used to manufacture military equipment, prison workers provide ninety eight percent of the total market for equipment assembly services. They produce ninety three percent of paints and paintbrushes, ninety two percent of stove assemblies, forty six percent of body armor, thirty six percent of all home appliances, thirty percent of all microphones, headphones, and speakers, and they even manufacture twenty one percent of all office furniture."

Reality Bytes (author) from Freeman On The Land United States of America. on November 05, 2010:

Satire? Do you have any idea of the United States unemployment rate? Put the law abiding citizens to work, and stick the criminals in a cell.


"I noticed your report did not say WHAT jobs are being lost to prison labor."

You must not have read the whole piece but thanks for the comment.

onegoodwoman from A small southern town on November 04, 2010:

I honestly can not tell if this is a satirical piece or you are calling for fair pay in the prison system.

Being in prison should not be a career. Crime should be punished. Let them work to offset their keep. The US is lenient on crime. That is the problem. People are not sent to jail for singing too loud in Sunday School or for doing too many good deeds.

I noticed your report did not say WHAT jobs are being lost to prison labor.

While I will agree that our system is flawed and a rich man can buy his way out of trouble.......I will also have to say that if more ( whatever race) are in jail than ( whatever other race), guess who is committing more crime!

Robert Sloan on November 04, 2010:

Manuscript is finished and working on a publisher now. As soon as a deal is done, I'll post and let everyone know. In the meantime, please read my 6 part series, "Corporatocracy" at my blog: This series demonstrates how the corporations are manipulating us and our laws for profits. Also, take a few minutes and watch the 23 part video, "The Corporation" on YouTube. Much information and provides a new way of thinking about corporations and their influence upon us through elections, etc.

Keep up the good work of informing all of us about these important issues and jobs being lost to prison labor.

Jeremey from Arizona on November 04, 2010:

This is just another good example of "corporatism" in America and the abuses that the wealthy pay into in this country. Its a double gain for the wealthy and a double loss for the poor. Racism has nothing to do with this issue its all about money, money, money!

Reality Bytes (author) from Freeman On The Land United States of America. on November 03, 2010:

Robert Sloan please let me know when your book is published. Everyone look at Robert's link for more info on this horrendous exploitation of prisoners to the detriment of the average working class American!

Reality Bytes (author) from Freeman On The Land United States of America. on November 03, 2010:

William R. Wilson OMG this never even crossed my mind. You have just changed my opinion on the Arizona Immigration Law. It makes perfect sense.

Everyone should read the article that William linked to!

Robert Sloan on November 03, 2010:

The NPR articles were on point and identified the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) as the perpetrator behind SB 1070. They are also the PAC responsible for increases in sentence length, truth in sentencing laws, 3 strike laws, etc. Members of ALEC are CCA, Geo Group, Boeing, AT&T and dozens of other corporations that use inmate labor to manufacture their goods.

Together ALEC and prison industry operators and the likes of CCA formulate "model legislation" that benefit their corporate donors, members and supporters. ALEC's lawmakers carry that proposed legislation back to their home states and lobby for enactment of the laws proposed in partnership with the corporate interests.

Bottom line is creating more and more slave labor for manufacturing while reducing wages by moving operations behind prison fences - and out of reach of our unemployed.

Between outsourcing and prison "insourcing" our jobs are disappearing at a quickening pace and what jobs are left to us, the wages have been decreased because it is an employer's market. It funnels more and more funds to the top few corporate owners in the U.S. through the combination of reduced wages and free cheap prison labor.

William R. Wilson from Knoxville, TN on November 03, 2010:

The prison industrial complex is definitely a problem. Have you seen this:

Reality Bytes (author) from Freeman On The Land United States of America. on November 03, 2010:

70% of prisoners in the United States are non-whites.

Although black people account for only 12 percent of the U.S. population, an estimated 44 percent of all prisoners in the United States are black.

It is estimated that 1 in 9 state government employees works in corrections

Reality Bytes (author) from Freeman On The Land United States of America. on November 03, 2010:

Pcoach, what upsets me is with the high level of unemployment, major American companies are outsourcing their jobs to prison labor. Tell my friends who are looking for jobs that the jobs that they could use to support their family is being done by prisoners for slave wages. The percentages of minorities in prison are fact. Maybe the Government will incarcerate more of us, that would lower unemployment. I am a conservative individual.

What about the fact that 25% of the world's prisoners are incarcerated within the United states yet we are only 5% of the globe's population.

Robert Sloan thanks for adding the additional information!

Robert Sloan on November 03, 2010:

This is a terrible and ongoing situation that steals our jobs and puts them behind bars for profits. First we put more and more citizens there and follow them with "jobs" to train them for when released. This training is simply a ploy used to justify the use of cheap prisoner labor. To date the program that allows such corporate use of prison labor is the federal PIECP program under 18 USC 1761(c). It is being abused without consequence since the Department of Justice outsourced all oversight to the NCIA - which is a private association whose membership is comprised of all participating prison industries involved in PIECP. They in effect oversee themselves and receive a large grant from DOJ for such oversight.

Lots of documents and more at

Bob Sloan

Prison Industry Consultant

pcoach on November 03, 2010:

I only have one problem with prisoners working and that is that they are taking jobs away from people who are not in prison that could be earning a living. I honestly don't care what they do in there. Prison is too appealing as it is. It's ridiculous. But as for slavery, that's kinda stupid, RB, especially for you. I had to look back at the top to be sure it was you that wrote it. Oh, well, imagine that.

I think people in prison should have to work and NOT be paid. So I guess I'm a racist then? Tell my black and white family members that and they will laugh you straight out of town! Um, there are white people in prison too so "can" the racism crap. It demeans you. You must be a democrat.

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