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Tucson Votes To Prohibit Contracts With For-Profit Prisons

Last year, hundreds of concerned citizenscrowded Mesa’s City Council meeting to voice their opposition to a contract the city was about to enter into with CoreCivic, the private prison company formerly known as Corrections Corporation of America.

But despite the crowd’s opposition, Mesa Mayor John Giles and the majority of the City Council voted for the new contract, which Giles called jail reform that would save the city money in light of rising booking costs.

Now another major Arizona city is going in the exact opposite direction.

The Tucson City Council voted unanimously last week to adopt a resolution that prohibits contracting with private, for-profit prison companies like CoreCivic or GEO Group. It’s a move that comes on the heels of a similar resolution passed last year by the Pima County Board of Supervisors, and it’s an important message to send, according to Tucson's Vice Mayor Paul Cunningham.

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Lauren Gilger, host of KJZZ's The Show, is an award-winning journalist whose work has impacted communities large and small, exposing injustices and giving a voice to the voiceless and marginalized.