General Assembly Resolution # 468
A resolution to reduce income inequality and increase basic welfare.
Category: Social Justice
Proposed by: Christian Democrats
The General Assembly,
Persuaded that prisons should aim to reduce recidivism rates and to perform their functions at the lowest possible costs to the public that are consistent with the dignity of inmates,
Recognizing that capitalism promotes and that business enterprises pursue the acquisition of repeat customers and the maximization of profits,
Deeply concerned that capitalism, in the context of prisons, creates perverse incentives to increase recidivism rates (more repeat customers) and to increase public expenditures on prisons (greater profit maximization), contrary to legitimate penological goals and the general welfare,
1. Defines a "prison" as a prison, penitentiary, jail, jailhouse, or other correctional or detention center that holds and houses, on a permanent or long-term basis, individuals who have been convicted of crimes and are serving criminal sentences;
2. Further defines a "private prison" as a prison that is entirely owned and operated or primarily owned and operated by a nongovernmental corporation, a private individual, or any other private actor or actors;
3. Requires all member states and their political subdivisions, within two calendar years of this resolution's passage and in perpetuity thereafter, to discontinue their use of private prisons for the incarceration of individuals convicted of crimes and serving criminal sentences;
4. Recommends that member states and political subdivisions, lacking a sufficient number of public prisons, implement Section 3 of this resolution by using the power of eminent domain to transfer prisons from private hands to public ownership (i.e., nationalization);
5. Clarifies that this resolution shall not be construed to extend to home detention, private probation, supervised release, halfway houses, and other similar practices, making use of private properties or private actors, in the criminal justice system;
6. Further clarifies that this resolution shall not be construed to prohibit member states and their political subdivisions from contracting with private actors for the provision to prisons of goods and services, such as public utilities, foodstuffs, and health services, that are incidental to prison ownership and operation; and
7. Declares that member states and their political subdivisions, notwithstanding Section 3 of this resolution, may use private facilities and private actors for imprisonment on a temporary basis, but only when it is necessary for the safety, health, or welfare of prisoners -- e.g., an emergency evacuation before a hurricane requires a prison warden to relocate his prison population to a private facility that is located inland.