The state is looking to privatize health services in prisons and the corrections system. It’s seeking bids for physical and mental health services, medical records-keeping and other administrative functions.
Meanwhile the union that represents the 1,300 state employees currently providing those services says it will offer a counter-proposal once the bids are in.
“We can do this work cheaper than is being managed right now by the department, and we are also very confident that we can beat any private company that would try to come in and take our jobs,” says Ray Holman, with UAW Local 6000. “We’re the psychologists. We’re the counselors. We’re the physicians. We’re the medical records people, and we’re the best equipped and the best trained to do this work.”
Bids are due later this month. If the state goes forward with the plan, it will be the largest public-to-private shift of services in Michigan history.