Americas Program, Center for International Policy (CIP)
There is a codependent relationship between the private prison industry and the federal government's immigration enforcement apparatus. Immigrant detention jumpstarted the two largest prison companies—Corrections Corporation of America (CCA) and GEO Group—in the prison industry.
The Immigration & Naturalization Service (INS) contracted CCA in 1983 and GEO (then Wackenhut Services, Inc.) in 1987 to provide prison beds for detained immigrants. These INS immigrant detention centers were among the first private prisons in the United States.