Petition statement to be delivered to Bill Gates

Bill Gates: End your investment in private prisons

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Bill Gates: End your investment in private prisons

To be delivered to Bill Gates

Petition Statement

Immediately withdraw your $2.2 million investment in the GEO Group.
There are currently 4,341 signatures. NEW goal - We need 5,000 signatures!

Petition Background

One of the world's biggest social good foundations is contributing to one of society's biggest ills — the private prison industry. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Trust has invested more than $2 million in GEO Group, one of the largest and most abusive private prison corporations in the United States.

GEO makes a business of jailing those with the fewest resources, profiting from their labor, stripping them of their dignity, and leaching precious human capital from already-distressed communities.

GEO Group and other private prison companies have a perverse profit motive to drive criminal justice and immigration policy towards more incarceration of citizens and immigrants in prisons, jails, and immigrant detention centers. They spend millions of dollars — dollars provided in part by investors like the Gates Foundation Trust — lobbying local, state, and federal governments to institute longer sentences, to incarcerate more people for minor crimes, and to terrorize immigrant communities.

If that weren't bad enough, GEO's prisons are notorious for their awful treatment of prisoners. Accounts of sexual assault, physical abuse, medical neglect, rotten and inadequate food, forced signing of immigration papers, and death have been well-documented at GEO facilities. A federal judge called the inhumane conditions at GEO’s now-closed Walnut Grove Youth Correctional Facility, "a picture of such horror as should be unrealized anywhere in the civilized world."

In light of this evidence, it is shocking that the Gates Foundation Trust would maintain its investment in the GEO group. The Gates Foundation prides itself on the good it does in the world. But this investment fundamentally contradicts the Foundation's stated mission: to "ensure that all people — especially those with the fewest resources — have access to the opportunities they need to succeed in school and life."

If enough of us speak out now, we'll be able to create a powerful media narrative that exposes this contradiction and shames the Gates Foundation Trust to withdraw its investment.

Join Presente, Enlace, and 25 other organizations in calling on the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Trust to immediately withdraw its investment in the GEO Group.

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