Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersSanders blasts Clinton at Calif. rally for rejecting debate Sanders steps up his attacks in homestretch Sanders: Democratic convention could be 'messy' MORE (I-Vt.) says he's introducing a criminal justice reform bill next week, calling the current system "broken."
"My legislation will eliminate federal, state and local contracts for privately run prisons within 2 years. It will reinstate the federal parole system. It will increase oversight and eliminate the overcharging of prisoners by private companies for banking and other services," Sanders, who is running for the Democratic presidential nomination, said in a statement on Tuesday.
According to Sanders's campaign, more than 8 percent of those incarcerated in state and federal prisons are in facilities that are privately owned, and most of those detained by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) are being held in private facilities.
Sanders's legislation comes as House lawmakers are also expected to unveil criminal justice reform legislation this month. A separate group of senators, including Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) who chairs the Senate Judiciary Committee, have also been trying to reach a deal on a reform bill.
Tuesday's comments aren't the first time Sanders has suggested that the United States needs to reform its criminal justice system.
He said in South Carolina late last month that there is no other presidential candidate that "will fight harder not only to end institutional racism, but to make fundamental changes in our broken criminal justice system."
His comments in the early voting state came after he had some issues with black activists, including speeches interrupted by protesters affiliated with the Black Lives Matter movement.
- This story was updated on Sept. 9.
"[W]e need bold change in our criminal justice system," Sanders added Tuesday. "We need to end the tragic reality that the United States has more people in jail than any other country on earth, and that the people being incarcerated are disproportionately black and Hispanic."