A People’s Tribunal Will Put ICE, Local Elected Officials, and a Private Prison Company on Trial for Detention Center Abuses

April 27, 2018

ICE on Trial
People’s subpoenas are being delivered to Williamson County Commissioners Court, Sheriff Chody, CoreCivic, and ICE to answer for abuses at the T. Don Hutto detention center

What: People’s Tribunal on abuses at T. Don Hutto detention center
When:  Saturday, May 5, press arrive at 1:30 PM for interviews, event runs from 2 to 4 PM
Where: T. Don Hutto Detention Center, 1001 Welch Street, Taylor, TX 76574
Who: Community members directly impacted by detention and deportation, and advocates

[TAYLOR, Texas] — On Saturday, May 5, immigrant rights activists, community leaders and people who have been directly affected by the immigrant detention system will gather in front of the T. Don Hutto detention center for a People’s Tribunal to hold Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) accountable for its culture of secrecy and systemic abuse at T. Don Hutto.

The People’s Tribunal will be led by judges who have been directly impacted by the detention and deportation system. Women formerly detained at Hutto and community members impacted by immigration enforcement will deliver a verdict rooted in their experiences and evidence introduced by witnesses.

The T. Don Hutto detention center has an egregious track record of abuse of power through documented retaliation, sexual assault, work abuses, and medical neglect.

The People’s Tribunal delivered subpoenas to the Williamson County Commissioners, Judge Gattis, and Sheriff Robert Chody on Tuesday, April 24 to answer for their role in the abuse through maintenance of the T. Don Hutto contract and oversight for the facility and crimes committed by CoreCivic employees and ICE officials. This action by the People’s Tribunal comes after local community members spent weeks urging Commissioners Court to take action on the Hutto issue. But the Commissioners ignored the public outcry and did not put the issue on their agenda for public discussion. Subpoenas will also be delivered to CoreCivic and ICE officials prior to the Tribunal. CoreCivic is better known by their former name, Corrections Corporation of America, or CCA.

The Tribunal is one of a series of coordinated People’s Tribunals across the country as a part of the #ICEonTrial campaign. The campaign comes with a rise in retaliation by ICE against activists, as the agency is emboldened to be less transparent, unaccountable and act with increased impunity under the Trump administration.


Grassroots Leadership is an Austin, Texas-based national organization that works for a more just society where prison profiteering, mass incarceration, deportation and criminalization are things of the past.

Detention Watch Network (DWN) is a national coalition of organizations and individuals working to expose and challenge the injustices of the United States’ immigration detention and deportation system and advocate for profound change that promotes the rights and dignity of all persons. Founded in 1997 by immigrant rights groups, DWN brings together advocates to unify strategy and build partnerships on a local and national level to end immigration detention. Visit www.detentionwatchnetwork.org



Rebecca Sanchez, rsanchez@grassrootsleadership.org, 512-499-8111

Carly Perez, cperez@detentionwatchnetwork.org, 202-846-7059