According to an article at the Tifton Gazette, the City of Tifton Council will be meeting on February 5th to discuss, among other things, a resolution to privatize probation services. On the surface, this might look like a win-win for the City as they’ve realized (I’m assuming) significant cost savings in other areas they’ve farmed out services, such as trash, etc. However, as far back as 2014, there have been serious concerns about private probation services, even right here in our own great state of Georgia.
In 2014, The Atlantic had an article that brought to light a new Human Rights Watch report that revealed just how damaging private probation services can and have been. The practice, enabled by those we put in power to represent us (whether knowingly or not), has allowed a form of “debtors’ prison” to re-emerge. The article is a good read and it should scare you if your own local government is considering this as an option (as the City of Tifton is as of this posting date).
According to City of Tifton Mayor Julie Smith, however, this hasn’t been decided and she welcomes everyone to come to the meetings and present their concerns.