Day 1 Alliance Launches As United Voice For Private Sector In Corrections & Detention
October 25, 2019
WASHINGTON, DC – Today, the Day 1 Alliance (D1A) launched as a new trade and advocacy organization dedicated to educating Americans on the small but valued role the private sector plays in addressing corrections and detention challenges in the United States. For more than 35 years, private contractors have partnered with local, state, and federal governments led by Democrats and Republicans to help meet urgent public safety needs and relieve overcrowded facilities in a cost-effective way for taxpayers. From day one, D1A recognizes the responsibility to provide safe and dignified care to those cared for in facilities that may be owned, managed or served by private contractors.
“It’s past time to add facts back into the debate over the private sector’s small but valued role in corrections and detention,” said Day 1 Alliance national spokesperson Alexandra Wilkes. “Private contractors lead through innovative programs that reduce recidivism, help prevent humanitarian crises stemming from immigration flows at the border, and provide flexible, cost-effective solutions to government partners in order to achieve vital public safety needs. D1A is a unified voice to advance a fact-based discussion on these important, complex issues.”
The Day 1 Alliance will engage in a range of activities aimed at educating and informing Americans about these issues, including a new website at day1alliance.org and Twitter feed @theday1alliance. D1A’s latest Myth vs. Fact and What They’re Saying fact sheets addressing key topics can be found on the website. Initial funding for D1A has been provided by CoreCivic, The GEO Group, and Management & Training Corporation, which have all committed to taking leadership roles with the Alliance. D1A will not advocate on policies, regulations, or legislation that impact the basis for or duration of an individual’s incarceration or detention.
“Recent efforts to ban private contractors are extreme and will harm the exact inmates and detainees that both the D1A and ban advocates care most about,” Wilkes continued. “Whether it’s a short-sighted decision in Denver that would result in hundreds of people in halfway houses being sent back to jail, or a new law in California that could end up moving detainees far from their families or into lower-quality facilities, these misguided, fact-free policy decisions have serious negative consequences for vulnerable populations. D1A looks forward to bringing intellectual honesty and real-world perspective back to this important policy debate, so our leaders can make the best, most informed decisions for our country’s future.”
About private contractors in corrections and detention:
Private contractors serving public corrections and detention needs play a small but valued role in the criminal justice and immigration systems. Only 8 percent of incarcerated people are cared for in contractor-operated facilities. The government also uses private contractors to help manage volatility caused by immigration flows and policy changes that otherwise would require billions of dollars of capital and the hiring of thousands of new federal employees.
When the industry emerged in the 1980s, it did so to solve critical problems within the public correctional system. Overcrowding, aging facilities, and declining services had led courts to intervene in the public management of 41 out of 50 state corrections systems in order to address unsafe or unconstitutional conditions.
Private service providers continue to answer government’s critical public safety needs by providing new facilities, management solutions, rehabilitation and recidivism reduction programs, and a push for stringent correctional accreditation standards across both the public and private systems.
About Alexandra Wilkes, Day 1 Alliance National Spokesperson:
Alexandra Wilkes is an attorney and serves as National Spokesperson for the Day 1 Alliance. She served as National Chairman of the College Republican National Committee — the first female elected to the position in the organization’s 126-year history. She most recently served as Senior Vice President at America Rising Corp. Wilkes is an alumna of The Catholic University of America and of Seton Hall University School of Law, where she served as President of the Seton Hall Law Federalist Society. She is licensed to practice law in her native Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and the District of Columbia.