The Corrections Corporation of America, which runs 12 Texas prison facilities, is facing a lawsuit from a publication that says it is failing to release information related to deaths and health care at the Dawson State Jail in Dallas, reports the Texas Tribune. The prison is one of several the legislature is considering for closure because of a declining prison population.
The lawsuit, filed in state court in Austin, seeks to force the company to comply with an open records request that was filed in March by Prison Legal News, a monthly magazine based in Vermont that focuses on prisoner rights. The magazine says it is trying to “enforce its right under state law to investigate patterns of unconscionable and unconstitutional conditions in corporate-run jails.” “This lawsuit is about the truth,” said Brian McGiverin, a Texas Civil Rights Project lawyer for Prison Legal News. “They hide the truth because they know the truth is horrifying.” Lawmakers are considering whether to close Dawson State Jail in the current budget, an effort spearheaded by state Sen. John Whitmire, along with the American Federation oif State County Municipal Employees.