GEO Group was created in 2003. Previously it was part of the Wackenhut corporation. It runs private prisons, immigration detention centers and mental health care facilities as well as rehabilitation and reintegration services. It runs over 100 facilities in the U.S. with a capacity of over 80,000 inmates.
Several civil suits have been brought against GEO Group over inmates’ injuries due to riots and poor treatment. American Civil Liberties Union has accused the company of torturing whistleblowers at its private immigration detention facility in Aurora, Colorado. It has also been accused of for forcing detainees to work for minimal wages as low as $1 a day. In March 2023, a Washington state jury ordered the comnpany to pay $17.3 million in back wages to inmates.
Security services, security technology, risk management, assessment and consulting, custody, detention, rehabilitation and care services.
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(December 18, 2022)
- Captive Market: The Politics of Private Prisons in America by Anna Gunderson (2022)
- Inside Private Prisons by Lauren-Brooke Eisen (2019)
- Punishment for Sale: Private Prisons, Big Business, and the Incarceration Binge by Donna Selman (2010)
- Private Prisons in America by Michael A. Hallett (2006)
- Prison, Inc. by K.C. Carceral (2005)
Other Key Sources
- Business and Human Rights Resource Centre's profile on GEO Group - UK-based Business and Human Rights Resource Centre is an NGO that employs researchers on five continents who work with activists, companies and governments alike to advance human rights in business by eradicating abuse.
- Corporate Watch's profile on GEO Group - Corporate Watch (a separate organisation from Corpwatch) is a research group that helps people stand up against corporations and capitalism
- American Friends Service Committee's profile on GEO Group - AFSC works for a just, peaceful, and sustainable world free of violence, inequality, and oppression. We join with people and partners worldwide to meet urgent community needs, challenge injustice, and build peace.
- Source Watch's profile on GEO Group - Source Watch provides well-documented information about corporate public relations (PR) campaigns, including corporate front groups, people who "front" corporate campaigns, and PR operations.
Private Corrections Working Group
Here you will find the latest in news, reports and resources on correctional privatization from around the world. This service is provided to inform our members, legislators and the public about the problems with for-profit private corrections.
Financial Times | Leke Oso Alabi | February 27, 2020
Asset managers and pension funds are being confronted with tough questions about their investments in US private prison providers, as the issue re-emerges as a hot political topic in the race for the White House.
Brennan Center for Justice | Lauren-Brooke Eisen | November 18, 2019
Caught in a unique political moment, state governments and banks are moving away from private detention facilities, raising questions about the industry’s future.
Liberation News | Alexander Casteneda | July 24, 2018
On July 16, several activist groups gathered at GEO Group headquarters, currently under construction in Boca Raton, Florida, to protest immigrant detention and mass incarceration.
Miami New Times | Jerry Iannelli | September 5, 2017
Sens. Marco Rubio and Bill Nelson, Gov. Rick Scott, Reps. Carlos Curbelo and Mario Diaz-Balart, and the majority of the Florida Legislature have taken thousands from GEO despite constant complaints from progressives and human-rights activists who say the company profits from destroying the lives of others.
Third Death in Immigration Detention Makes the Adelanto Detention Center the Deadliest Facility in 2017
Detention Watch Network | June 6, 2017
Immigrant rights organizations, Community Initiatives for Visiting Immigrants in Confinement (CIVIC), Detention Watch Network (DWN), and the Inland Coalition for Immigrant Justice were deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Vicente Caceres-Maradiaga.
Unicorn Riot | February 8, 2017
The local immigrant community and their supporters held a vigil on Monday, February 6th, 2017 at the GEO Group’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Detention Center in Aurora, Colorado and Unicorn Riot was live for the event.
Broward Palm Beach New Times | Ray Downs | April 27, 2015
Local activists last week protested Boca Raton-based GEO Group for abuses in the highly profitable private prisons it runs. Meanwhile, the company is under scrutiny by the Department of Justice for wasting at least $3 million while operating a troubled rural Texas prison...
Close Reeves | 2007
7 youths sue the GEO Group claiming they were mentally, physically, and sexually abused by a registered sex offender working at the prison. (2007)
- Sum of Us
- Art Space Sanctuary
- ESG Transparancy Initiative
- DHS Watch
- Detention Watch Network
- American Civil Liberties Union
- Detention Action
- Freedom for Immigrants
Reuters | Jody Godoy | August 25, 2022
A GEO Group Inc shareholder sued current and former directors and officers of the private prison company, saying they breached their duties by downplaying the legal risk of paying immigrant detainees in work programs $1 a day.
Reuters | Daniel Wiessner | December 9, 2021
A federal judge in Washington has upheld a $17.3 million jury award for immigrant detainees who were paid far below the minimum wage to participate in a work program, rejecting private prison operator GEO Group Inc's bid to significantly lower it.
Serving the Public Good?—A Corpus-Assisted Discourse Analysis of Private Prisons and For-Profit Incarceration in the United States
Frontiers | Karoline Marko | November 5, 2021
It is a well-known fact that the United States has a very high prison population compared to other countries, and that it is particularly the private prison industry that has been thriving.
Justia Dockets & Filings | November 1, 2021
Class and Collective Action Complaint against the GEO Group, Inc., GEO Secure Services, LLC, GEO Corrections and Detentions, LLC, GEO Corrections Holdings, Inc., (Filing fee $402.00 receipt number ACASDC-16276962.), filed by Daniel Perez.
Prison Legal News | October 1, 2021
She was the seventh GEO employee to plead guilty to the charges presented in federal indictments following a joint U.S. Marshals Service, FBI, and U.S. Department of Justice’s Office of the Inspector General investigation into bribery and drug smuggling at the jail.
The Guardian | Niamh McIntyre | October 10, 2018
Figures reveal some firms may be making up to 30% profit on Home Office contracts.
ABC News | Mark Willacy | June 19, 2018
Secret reports and insider accounts from prison officers and former inmates reveal Brisbane's Arthur Gorrie Correctional Centre is overcrowded, increasingly violent and unsafe — even for the staff.
Prison Legal News | Derek Gilna | January 10, 2017
In May 2016, private prison firm The GEO Group, which operates the maximum-security Louis Kutama Sinthumule Correctional Centre in Louis Trichard, South Africa, lost a lawsuit that alleged the company’s guards beat a prisoner while he was restrained in handcuffs and shackles.
Campaign Legal Center | 2016
CLC took action to address a pay-to-play scheme in which a government contractor, private prison company GEO, violated the ban on contributions by government contractors by making a six-figure donation to a super PAC supporting candidate Trump just one day after the Obama Administration announced it would phase out the use of private prisons.
The Tablet | Megan Cornwell | March 2, 2016
A report into conditions at Harmondsworth immigration centre near Heathrow Airport has found evidence of substandard facilities and lack of suitable care for vulnerable adults.
Business and Human Rights Resources Centre | July 15, 2015
GEO Group has been accused of relying on cheap and unpaid labor by detained immigrants and is facing several lawsuits alleging that “voluntary” work programs at their facilities violate state minimum-wage laws.
Mother Jones | Madison Pauly | October 28, 2021
The people locked up in one for-profit immigration detention center are in line for one hell of a raise. For years, the GEO Group, one of the nation’s largest private prison companies, has been able to keep labor costs low in its Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) detention centers by relying on the people it locks up to do the work.
USA Today | Monsey Alvarado et al | Apr. 23, 2020
Billy McConnell was attending the grand opening of a Louisiana prison in 1997 when a sheriff mentioned he’d like a new jail but didn’t want to operate it. McConnell saw money in that moment.
New York Times | Timothy Williams | April 10, 2018
In Arizona in 2015, a riot broke out in a private prison where previously three inmates had escaped and murdered a vacationing couple.
Prison Legal News | October 10, 2017
The GEO Group -- one of the nation's largest private prison firms, which is frequently the subject of scandal arising from repeated human rights violations at its for-profit facilities – has agreed to settle a lawsuit brought against the company in 2015 by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).
Netherlands-based BankTrack tracks the involvement of commercial banks in financing business sectors and specific activities with a negative impact on people and planet.
Open Secrets - Tracks corporate lobbying of US politicians.
PR Watch | Alex Kotch | January 29, 2021
GEO Group (private prisons): $1.3 million. Three subsidiaries of the private prison giant combined to give large donations to CLF, SLF, and the New Republican PAC.
Newsweek | Mirren Gidda | November 5, 2017
Within the Texas legislature, a controversial bill is pending. A private prisons company called the GEO Group has allegedly asked Republicans to submit a law that could lead to immigrant children being indefinitely detained in its lucrative centers.
Sludge | Alex Kotch | June 24, 2019
Right-wing student organization Turning Point USA (TPUSA) accepted $50,000 from the foundation of the nation’s largest private prison company in 2017, a Sludge investigation of tax documents has found.
ProPublica | 2020
Geo Group Foundation Inc. Boca Ration, FL 33431-3367 | Tax-exempt since May 20.
The American Prospect | Bryce Covert | June 28, 2019
Structured as real-estate investment trusts, private companies could receive funds to build prisons and lease them to governments for use.
Bloomberg News | Rob Urban | August 9, 2018
Private-prison companies keep winning, and they have U.S. taxpayers to thank.
In the Public Interest | June 2018
While governments have traditionally used municipal bonds to finance the construction of correctional facilities, there is evidence that the two major private prison companies, CoreCivic (formerly Corrections Corporation of America, or CCA) and GEO Group, are actively pushing governments to consider the use of private financing to build new facilities, and that governments are increasingly interested in the idea.
The Grid | Chris Geidner | January 26, 2022
GEO Group, one of the largest private prison companies, detailed its “strategy” for getting around the order in a previously confidential document filed with the SEC.
The Marshall Project | Jamiles Lartey | November 17, 2020
CoreCivic and GEO Group have been shifting away from prisons toward other government contracts, like office space and immigration detention.