Full List Of Private Prisons In The State Of Pennsylvania

Read this article for a full list of private prisons in the state of Pennsylvania with all information.

Full List Of Private Prisons In The State Of Pennsylvania
Full List Of Private Prisons In The State Of Pennsylvania

Private prisons have been a subject of intense debate in Pennsylvania due to various controversies. Those in favor of these prisons claim they offer cost-effective and efficient services, leading to better outcomes for inmates.

However, critics argue that private prisons prioritize profits over rehabilitation and safety, sometimes compromising standards to save money.

As a result, the topic remains highly controversial in the state's criminal justice system. Thus, many states have also closed private prisons to ensure safety and reduce costs.

Some states in the U.S. terminated Federal Contact with the private prisons and imposed strict rules for operating such prisons. They have also limited their inmate score and as these private prisons did not come up with equal correctional facilities, resources, and programs.

List of Private Prisons in the State of Pennsylvania

Moshannon Valley Correctional Center or Moshannon Valley Processing Center

It is a private prison operated by GEO Group. CI Moshannon Valley is located in central Pennsylvania, 131 miles east of Pittsburgh. Moshannon Valley Correctional Facility provides accommodations for approximately 1,750 individuals under federal custody.

It is a minimum-level security prison, incarcerating prisoners that do not require high security.

Allegheny County Jail

This prison is Located in Pittsburgh and focuses on rehabilitating individuals involved in minor offenses. It was built in 1995 in downtown Pittsburgh with a capacity of over 3,000, Yet, it currently maintains an average daily population below 2,000 due to collaborative efforts to reduce incarceration rates.

The Bureau of Corrections is responsible for the care and custody of the committed individuals, while the courts handle their release and commitment decisions. The facility offers various services and programs, thanks to numerous partners involved in healthcare, counseling, education, and rehabilitation.

Notably, the jail is accredited by the American Correctional Association, making it one of three such facilities in Pennsylvania.

Susquehanna Valley Youth Development Center

The Susquehanna Valley Youth Development Center (SVYDC) is a non-profit, prominent transformative institution dedicated to rehabilitating at-risk youth in the Susquehanna Valley.

It provides a safe and nurturing environment with individualized programs encompassing therapy, education, and improving the youth's health.

It also offers vocational training and developing life skills to help them survive on release. SVYDC emphasizes family involvement and aims to empower young individuals with second chances for a brighter future.

Luzerne 1 Residential Center (Roth Hall)

This is a privately owned prison located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. CoreCivic operates this highly secured re-entry and treatment facility. It keeps young adults aged 18+ convicted of crimes under Pennsylvania state law.

In this prison, many inmates with non-serious crimes serve sentences for more than a year.

Luzerne 2 Residential Center (Walker Hall)

Luzerne 2 Residential Center (Walker Hall) is another facility operated by CoreCivic that manages many re-entry treatment facilities. It is also located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

This highly structured environment receives inmates through the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections referrals.

This facility does not have security, and relies on voluntary compliance with the rules. However, the rules are enforced strictly without any issues among the inmates.

George W. Hill Correctional Facility

Nestled in Delaware County, Pennsylvania, within the townships of Thornbury and Concord, you'll find the George W. Hill Correctional Facility, a prominent prison in the Philadelphia metropolitan area. Its postal address in Thornton signifies its presence in the region.

Established in 1998, the facility's management has seen a series of transitions. Boca Raton initially operated it, followed by Florida's GEO Group until 2009; it then came under the administration of the West Caldwell, New Jersey-based company Community Education Centers (CEC).

Recently, in April 2017, GEO Group reclaimed control by acquiring CEC, regaining George W. Hill Correctional Facility Management.

As of April 6, 2022, Delaware County has taken back control of the facility, assuming its management. George W. Hill Correctional Facility predominantly accommodates inmates with sentences of two years less one day or state sentences of five years less one day.

Notably, the facility holds historical significance as Pennsylvania's last privately operated county jail, adding to its unique status in the realm of corrections.

Western Correctional Institution

Situated in Cumberland, Maryland, Pennsylvania, it is a highly secured private prison operated by the GEO group with a capacity of about 1,800 beds for male inmates. Within the correctional facility, dedicated programs cater to the psychological well-being of inmates.

These encompass psychiatric therapies and substance abuse interventions, ensuring those in need receive proper care. Moreover, a specially designed 48-week offender treatment initiative operates within the facility to effectively manage and diminish anger and aggression among prisoners.

It also helps foster a more constructive and rehabilitative environment.

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The Future of Private Prisons in Pennsylvania

The future of private prisons in the state of Pennsylvania is uncertain due to the increasing controversy. Supporters claim that they help save costs and ease taxpayer burdens. However, critics argue that they hinder rehabilitation and violate human rights.

Possible solutions include stricter regulations, better oversight, investing in rehabilitation programs, and reducing overall incarceration rates. It also includes changes in state laws and policies, public opinion, and developments in the criminal justice system as a whole.


The list of the private prisons in Pennsylvania comprises seven prisons critical to the state’s criminal justice system. They help manage the prisoner population in the region, ensuring safety and health of the inmates.

Some of these facilities offer numerous correctional programs for the inmates, preparing them for communities. These private correctional facilities must adhere to strict regulations and oversight by state authorities to ensure the incarcerated individuals' proper care, safety, and well-being.

Their presence offers a distinct approach to corrections, contributing to the state's efforts in managing its prison population. It is crucial to address the issues associated with private prisons in the state and explore potential solutions to focus more on rehabilitation rather than punishment.

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How many prisons are there in Pennsylvania?

Pennsylvania does not have a lot of prisons like some other states. It has 23 correctional facilities and 14 community corrections centers. Furthermore, this state also had around 40 contract facilities, one motivational boot camp, and one training academy.

Do private prisons keep inmates longer?

Private prisons help the federal and state governments manage the prisoner population and avoid overcrowding. However, they sometimes lead to longer sentences and higher incarceration rates. Private prisons do not shy away from keeping prisoners longer, as the government pays them for every prisoner.

How many federal prisons are in Pennsylvania?

Pennsylvania is home to ten federal prisons and five federal prison camps. The Northeast Regional Office of the Federal Bureau of Prisons monitors the federal facilities to ensure proper operation.

What are the highest security prisons in Pennsylvania?

Maximum-security prisons offer the highest level of security to ensure the safety of inmates and staff. The State Correctional Institution – Greene is a maximum security prison in Pennsylvania, located in Franklin Township, Greene County, Pennsylvania, near Waynesburg.

What are the negatives of private prisons?

They help manage the prisoner population for federal and state governments, but many states have been closing private prisons recently. Private prisons do not offer the high security required for particular inmates and often fail to follow the rules. Furthermore, there have been incidences of ignoring the inmates' health needs.

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