State of Illinois
92nd General Assembly

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 1                          HOUSE RESOLUTION

 2        WHEREAS, There  are  over  48,000  adults  and  juveniles
 3    incarcerated  in  36 correctional facilities run by the State
 4    of Illinois; and

 5        WHEREAS,   Despite   problems   of    overcrowding    and
 6    understaffing,  these  prisons  have  an  excellent record of
 7    maintaining the public safety; and

 8        WHEREAS, In other states where private prisons have  made
 9    encroachments,   correctional   security   has   often   been
10    significantly compromised, resulting in more serious injuries
11    to  staff  and inmates, as well as a growing number of inmate
12    escapes; and

13        WHEREAS,  One  of  the  primary  causes  of  such  unsafe
14    conditions in private prisons  is  the  poor  training,  high
15    turnover, and low compensation of their employees; and

16        WHEREAS,  The  Illinois  General  Assembly has recognized
17    that "issues of liability, accountability, and cost warrant a
18    prohibition of the ownership,  operation,  or  management  of
19    correctional  facilities  by  for-profit  contractors" by its
20    enactment of a moratorium against private prisons; and

21        WHEREAS, In spite of that moratorium, attempts are  still
22    being   made   to   privatize   operations   of  the  State's
23    correctional facilities through incremental measures; and

24        WHEREAS,  The   Department   of   Corrections   currently
25    contracts  out  medical services at its facilities, which has
26    led to difficulty in recruiting  and  retaining  health  care
27    professionals  and hardships for employees, including bounced
28    pay checks from fly-by-night contractors; and

29        WHEREAS, Governor Ryan has proposed the privatization  of
30    a  number  of important functions that impact prison security
                            -2-               LRB9211428RCcdA
 1    at all Illinois Department of Corrections prisons,  including
 2    dietary and commissary functions; and

 3        WHEREAS,  The  privatization  of  such functions would be
 4    detrimental to the efficient and  secure  function  of  these
 5    facilities  and  is  therefore  contrary to the intent of the
 6    Private Correctional Facility Moratorium Act;  therefore,  be
 7    it

10    the State of Illinois affirms its  commitment  to  a  secure,
11    safe,  and  effective  State  prison  system  by forestalling
12    efforts  to  incrementally  privatize   operations   of   the
13    Department of Corrections; and be it further

14        RESOLVED,  That  the  House  of  Representatives  opposes
15    Governor   Ryan's  proposal  to  privatize  the  dietary  and
16    commissary  functions   at   the   Illinois   Department   of
17    Corrections prisons; and be it further

18        RESOLVED, That the Department of Corrections shall, prior
19    to  the  privatization of any aspect of operations at a State
20    of Illinois correctional facility, seek the authorization  of
21    the  General  Assembly  to request bids for any services that
22    are normally performed by  employees  of  the  Department  of
23    Corrections; and be it further

24        RESOLVED,  That  a  suitable  copy  of this resolution be
25    delivered to the Director of Corrections.

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