Protest keeps prison profiteers on guard

    Protesters disrupt a Corrections Corporation of America investors' meeting in Midtown Manhattan. (Flickr/VOCAL-NY)
    Protesters disrupt a Corrections Corporation of America investors’ meeting in Midtown Manhattan. (Flickr/VOCAL-NY)

    If you want to buy into the Corrections Corporation of America — at least at the “analyst meeting” the company held yesterday in New York — you’ll have to pay more than you might have bargained for. According to activist Felton Davis, “Any investors attending that meeting had to pass through a line of police officers at the entrance to the hotel, and a group of people chanting ‘Build schools, not prisons.'”

    Added Davis:

    Several local groups participated in a campaign called “Thirty Years of Private Prisons: Nothing to Celebrate,” culminating in a demonstration in Washington, D.C., earlier this year.  Yesterday’s impromptu action at the Hyatt on 42nd Street was a continuation and extension of that effort, conducted at very short notice, and the young people did a fine job, disrupting the investors conference inside the hotel, and briefly blocking the street outside at 9 a.m. rush hour.

    Participants reported rough handling by security. “One of the Hyatt security staff grabbed me and pushed me repeatedly, at one point shoving my violently in the face and snapping my neck back,” said Emily Tucker, a staff attorney with the Center for Popular Democracy. “I pointed this man out to a group of policemen. He was standing a few feet away laughing with one of the officers, and the cops I was talking to wouldn’t even look in the direction I was pointing.”

    “Hyatt should think twice about hosting prison profiteers in their hotels if they want to avoid disturbances like this in the future,” she said.



    Recent Stories

    • Feature

    How Kenyans are resisting one of the largest development projects in East Africa

    June 19, 2021

    After making little progress on their own, climate justice organizers in Kenya came together with youth, farmers and women to fight for sustainable development.

    • Analysis

    5 ways to push antisemites out of the Palestinian solidarity movement

    June 16, 2021

    With support for Palestinian freedom hitting a new level, intentional strategies are needed to stop white nationalists looking to hijack the movement.

    • Analysis

    50 years ago, the Pentagon Papers’ success hinged on a personal conversion to nonviolence

    June 14, 2021

    Without the friendships he forged in the antiwar movement, Daniel Ellsberg might not have found the courage and support he needed to help end the Vietnam War.