Commentary

The Power of Competition–Even Behind Bars

Today a UK business orgainization, CBI, released a report looking at the results of 10 years of privatization of prisons in the UK. You can get the report at the CBI Web site. The most interesting thing about the report is that it not only shows how privatizated prisons delivered very good performance, but how the competition drove the remaining government-operated prisons to dramatically improve their performance. As the Labor Commissioner for Correctional Services put it The experience of private sector involvement in the provision and operation of prisons has been a great success. Not only have the private sector providers demonstrated they can run prisons which are among the best in this country, but the introduction of competition has been a key catalyst for change in the wider prison service.

Adrian Moore

Adrian Moore, Ph.D., is vice president of policy at Reason Foundation, a non-profit think tank advancing free minds and free markets.