family detention

VIDEO: Survivor of Japanese incarceration during WWII takes us from Crystal City to Dilley

Dr. Satsuki Ina, a psychotherapist and professor emeritus at California State University — Sacramento was born in an incarceration camp in California, before moving with her mother to a camp in Crystal City, Texas. An advocate against family detention, Dr. Ina returned to Texas for a rally on May 2nd rally in Dilley, Texas. In this powerful video by Matthew Gossage, Dr. Ina visits Crystal City for the first time since childhood and talks about why detaining families is wrong.

A statement released by the Japanese American Citizens League (JACL) earlier this month condemned the U.S. Government’s practice of detaining asylum-seeking families

Jun 19, 2015
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The Guardian

Controversial UK security firm lobbying for US migrant detention contracts

A controversial British security company implicated in numerous immigration detention controversies in the UK and Australia is lobbying to secure potentially lucrative contracts to detain migrant families in the United States, documents obtained by the Guardian show.

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Bob Libal, executive director of Grassroots Leadership, an immigrant advocacy group working with detained families, described Serco’s attempted entry to the industry as “very concerning”, arguing their proposal was little different from the system already in place.

“There is simply no way to ‘dress up’ family detention. It’s not whether or not the walls are painted or if there are benches in the cafeteria that take a tool. Locking up families always takes a toll, and the government should end family detention, not simply switch contractors,” Libal told the Guardian.

“Furthermore, Serco’s history in Australia and the UK certainly doesn’t inspire confidence that they will do anything different,” he added. [node:read-more:link]

May 20, 2015
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Fort Worth Weekly

Asylum Seekers Detained

"...The newest ICE facility, the South Texas Family Residential Center, near Dilley, will house 2,400 mothers and children when completed. It will be run by Corrections Corporation of America, the largest private prison operator in the United States. The CCA will receive $276 per day per person from the federal government to run Dilley, a staggering $241 million per year. The CCA ran the T. Don Hutto facility when ICE was sued over conditions there.

While exact figures were not available for the smaller, GEO Group-run Karnes County Residential Facility, which houses 592 women and children, the cost per day per bed is probably similar to what CCA is getting for Dilley.

'I visited the Karnes facility last September,' said Bob Libal, executive director of Grassroots Leadership, an organization working to end the private prison industry. 'And, yes, there are paintings on the walls, and there’s a small soccer field for the kids, but the reality is that prolonged detention is always detrimental to kids and their moms. And at Karnes, some of the women have been held for as long as nine months.'

Libal noted that those families seeking refugee status are not generally considered flight risks and are normally 'given a notice to appear at a detention court and told to check in with an ICE worker and let go,' frequently to sponsors or family members already living in the United States. When they appear for their hearing, the mothers are interviewed about why they are seeking asylum. If they pass that 'credible fear' interview, their request for asylum moves on through the system. If they do not pass the interview, they are scheduled for deportation...

...Christina [sic] Parker, the immigrations program director for Grassroots Leadership, helped organize a protest at Dilley on May 2, which was attended by more than 600 people. 'When you look at the Dilley facility, it doesn’t look like a prison,' she said. 'There are rows of little trailers set up, sort of like a camp. But there are still armed guards, and the kids are still locked up. And they shouldn’t be.'

Parker pointed to a decision in a lawsuit brought against the Immigration and Naturalization Service, the precursor to ICE, in 1987 by the ACLU over the detention of illegal immigrant children. The 1997 determination, known as the Flores Settlement Agreement, required that juveniles 'be held in the least restrictive setting appropriate to their age and special needs, generally, in a non-secure facility licensed to care for dependent, as opposed to delinquent, minors.'

Parker said that the suit had been revived in light of the recent expansion of family detention. 'There’s a decision expected in a week,' she said. 'The law says children cannot be held in secure, prison-like facilities. They must be held in licensed child-care facilities.'" [node:read-more:link]

May 15, 2015
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The Monitor

Editorial: More immigration judges will help courts, country

"The privately-run detention facility, operated by Corrections Corporation of America, is paid $275 per day per detainee, said Bob Libal, executive director of Grassroots Leadership in Austin. 'At full build out it will bring $660,000 per day or $240 million in annual revenue from this one detention camp,' Libal said.

That’s all paid for with American taxpayer funds and is a prime example of why detainees need to be processed and adjudicated quickly through our courts.

As Cuellar told us: 'Right now the backlog is just tremendous so this will allow us to have hearings before the judges on a much faster pace so we can get rid of the backlog. Whatever the judge’s decide — whether they can stay or return — at least they get a day before a judge.'" [node:read-more:link]

Apr 19, 2015
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RawStory

Asylum-seeking mothers launch hunger strike over inhumane conditions at Texas detention center

"According to a new report from the Grassroots Leadership, private for-profit prison corporations spent $11 million over six years to lobby Congress to keep a mandatory immigrant detention quota.

Today, 9 out of the 10 largest immigrant detention centers are private, with 8 owned by only two corporations, the GED Group and CCA. Since the end of 2007, the GEO Group has increased their profits by 244% and CCA by 46%." [node:read-more:link]

May 2, 2015
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ABC KSAT - TV

Hundreds call for release of detainees at immigrant detention center

DILLEY, Texas - Hundreds of protesters rallied Saturday for the release of detainees being held at an immigrant detention center in Dilley.

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Protesters from across the state converged on Dilley City Hall before marching to the detention center.

Organizers at Grassroots Leadership said the protest was being held to "call for an end to the Obama administration’s inhumane, and illegal policy of locking up refugee parents and children."

Solidarity protests were held Saturday at family detention centers in Pennsylvania and Colorado, as well as the White House. [node:read-more:link]

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