AP reports on a new lawsuit against LaSalle Corrections over its operation of a correctional facility in Texarkana, Texas. The suit says a female inmate being held on a parole violation got sick, went blind and died because of poor health care.
The case, as described is dreadful. And it is not the first lawsuit of its kind over conditions in Texarkana, where LaSalle operates a jail and a correctional facility.
Arkansas has placed state prisoners in the Bi-State facility in Texarkana, Texas. So does the city of Texarkana, Ark.
LaSalle, based in Louisiana, also operates a Georgia detention facility for immigrants where allegations of unnecessary hysterectomies have been made recently.
That’s not all about LaSalle in Arkansas. Its lobbyist in Arkansas is Gilmore Strategies, comprising former staffers of Governor Hutchinson. Hutchinson — surprise! — backed a plan by which Drew and Bradley counties will build a nominal county jail with hundreds of extra beds to be operated by LaSalle to accept state prison inmates, a dramatic step forward in privatizing Arkansas prisons. The state’s previous experience was not good.
When a state privatizes to save money and when a private corrections company cuts costs to maximize its profits, inmates AND staff can suffer.
As a lawyer in the latest lawsuit told AP about the woman who died:
“She is just the latest victim of a corporate culture that sees inmates as dollar signs and puts profits over people’s lives.”