True Justice Reform Must Include Performance-Based Contracting

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Posted: Oct 17, 2020 12:01 AM

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On the campaign trail, President Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden have repeatedly highlighted their efforts to reform the broken criminal justice system. President Trump and Vice President Pence have rightly touted the First Step Act of 2018, which expanded options for inmates looking to get back on the right side of the law. Meanwhile, Joe Biden has advocated for job training for incarcerated individuals, as well as utilizing alternatives to prison, such as rehabilitation facilities.  While these proposals are wholly reasonable, Biden has unfortunately muddied the conversation on criminal justice reform by vilifying private prisons. These non-government institutions already provide the rehabilitation-based services that Biden suggests without breaking the bank for taxpayers. Both presidential contenders can and must call for performance-based contracting, which will deliver more humane results for inmates at an affordable cost. 

In 1998, the Clinton administration provided a useful overview of performance-based contracting: “It is designed to ensure that contractors are given freedom to determine how to meet the

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