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Upcoming Event: National Day of the Dead Actions
Since 2003, 165 people have died in immigrant detention, including 11 deaths in Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) custody this year alone. From October 26 to November 4, DWN members and allies will mark the Latin American Holiday, Día de los Muertos or Day of the Dead, with national actions.
The Day of the Dead National Actions aim to honor the lives of those who have died in immigrant detention, as recent investigations into deaths in detention have found that inadequate medical care has contributed to numerous deaths. Our goal is to have at least 10 cities across the country participate in the actions to highlight the 11 untimely deaths that have occurred this year, while amplifying the voices of those who have been directly-impacted by the immigration detention system.
Sponsoring Organizations: Alliance 4 Citizenship, United We Dream, SOA Watch, National Day Laborer Organizing Network, We Belong Together, Southeast Immigrant Rights Network, Enlace and Color of Change
(Continuously updated – check back for more details)
If interested in hosting an event that will amplify detention center deaths, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for support. Event examples:
Support for your Event. The DWN Action Guide:
DWN has created a Day of the Dead Action Guide, to support members and allies in making their event a success. The Action Guide includes a list of direct action materials, talking points, press templates and more!
Support for your Event. Posters:
Detention Watch Network (DWN) works with its members to increase public awareness, build community organizing capacity and advance national advocacy strategies on immigration detention issues through coordinated campaigns.
The United States government arbitrarily detains immigrants across the country with the enforcement of immigration detention bed quotas that operate on a national and local level, resulting in a financial market where people’s lives are treated as profit. In 2013 DWN launched the End the Quota campaign with the goal to remove the national detention bed quota from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) approbations bill and eliminate the use of guaranteed minimums from detention center contracts. Since then, the campaign has raised public awareness, garnered significant media coverage and made the quota a go-to talking point for DWN members. In 2015, DWN saw increased congressional support as legislation was introduced to remove the national quota and local quotas.
The reemergence of family detention in the summer of 2014, led DWN members and allies to launch a campaign that incorporates grassroots organizing, media work and litigation to target President Obama and DHS to end family detention. As a result, the Obama administration reformed its family detention policy to reduce the amount of time women and children are held in detention. However, DWN and its members and allies continue to push for an end to the punitive policy.
Expose & Close started in 2012, when DWN coordinated the release of ten reports demanding the closure of immigration detention facilities that exemplified the human rights abuses occurring system wide. In 2014, the report called attention to the Artesia Family Residential Center in New Mexico, leading to its closure. The reports serve as educational and advocacy tools for anyone to use to challenge the detention system.