Columbia University Will Divest From Private Prison Companies

NEW YORK — Columbia University trustees voted Monday to divest from for-profit prison companies because of concerns about mass incarceration, becoming the first major university to do so.

Columbia, in New York, owned more than 230,000 shares of Corrections Corp. of America, the largest private prison company, headquartered in Nashville, Rolling Stone reported last year. The school no longer owns those shares, law professor Jeff Gordon disclosed in April. The school still holds shares in G4S, a British prison and security services company…

An article in The Guardian described a G4S facility in England as rife with drugs and alcohol. An American Civil Liberties Union lawsuit accused a Corrections Corp. of America-owned prison as permitting excessive violence and prison guards who laughed as they declined to treat prisoners’ injuries…

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