Researchers say the economic benefits of prisons often don't materialize for rural communities. That's according to a new paper by Northwest sociologists. In fact, they found communities with private prisons fare worse than they did before.
Washington State University sociologist Gregory Hook says rural areas that opt to build prisons, even courting them with tax breaks, have one main goal in mind: jobs.
“You know, you look across the way and you say 'Oh there's a prison. Fifty people have a job there. So that's 50 new jobs in my community.' … Only it's not.”