有罪租赁是一种监狱劳工制度，主要在1884年至1928年间在美国南部使用。在定罪租赁中，国营监狱从私人政党与公司签订合同，向公司提供定罪劳工。在合同期限内，承租人 – 而不是监狱 – 承担监督，住房，喂养和囚犯服装的所有费用和责任。早在1844年路易斯安那首次使用它时，合同租赁在1865年内战结束后美国重建时期奴隶解放后迅速蔓延。作为各州如何从这一过程中获利的一个例子，阿拉巴马州从囚犯租赁产生的年度总收入的百分比从1846年的10％增加到1889年的近73％。由于在废除奴隶制之后在南方通过的众多“黑色法典”的侵略性和歧视性执法，监狱出租的大多数囚犯都是黑人。定罪租赁的做法带来了巨大的人力成本，租赁罪犯的死亡率比非租赁国家的囚犯死亡率高出约10倍。例如，在1873年，25％的黑人租囚犯在服刑期间死亡。尽管它对各州有利可图，但在19世纪末20世纪初期，囚犯租赁逐渐被淘汰，主要原因是公众舆论不利以及工会运动不断增长。虽然阿拉巴马州成为最后一个终止1928年定罪租赁官方行为的州，但其中的一些方面仍然是今天不断增长的监狱工业综合体的一部分。
Convict leasing was a system of prison labor used mainly in the Southern United States from 1884 until 1928. In convict leasing, state-run prisons profited from contracting with private parties from plantations to corporations to provide them with convict labor. During the term of the contracts, the lessees—rather than the prisons—bore all cost and responsibility for overseeing, housing, feeding, and clothing the prisoners. While it was first used by Louisiana as early as 1844, contract leasing spread quickly after the emancipation of slaves during the period of American Reconstruction following the end of the Civil War in 1865. As an example of how the states profited from the process, the percentage of Alabama’s total annual revenue generated from convict leasing increased from 10 percent in 1846 to nearly 73 percent by 1889. As a result of aggressive and discriminatory enforcement of the numerous “Black Codes” laws passed in the South after the abolishment of slavery, the majority of prisoners leased out by the prisons were black. The practice of convict leasing extracted a substantial human cost, with death rates among leased convicts running about 10 times higher than death rates among prisoners in non-leasing states. During 1873, for example, 25 percent of all black leased convicts died while serving their sentences. Despite its profitability to the states, convict leasing was slowly phased out during the late 19th and early 20th centuries largely due to negative public opinion and opposition from the growing labor union movement. While Alabama became the last state to end the official practice of convict leasing in 1928, several of its aspects remain as part of today’s growing prison industrial complex.