Detention Watch Network Welcomes New Approach to Immigration, Calls on Biden to Dismantle Immigration Detention in Future Actions

For Immediate Release: 
Wednesday, January 20, 2021

Washington, DC — In response to President Biden’s day one agenda on immigration, Silky Shah, Executive Director of Detention Watch Network offered the following statement: 

“Biden’s day one bill and executive orders on immigration policy are a welcome departure from the racism and xenophobia of the Trump era. For years, people across the country have been demanding transformative change to protect immigrant family members, friends, coworkers and neighbors, and today the Biden administration took a significant first step to fundamentally transform the government’s approach to immigration.

Today’s actions must be the first step of many. In conjunction with today's announcements we demand the administration include priorities on immigration detention for forthcoming actions within the first 100 days. It is critical that the Biden administration continue to take executive action to address the harm of the past four years and to begin to undo the criminalization and punitive nature of the immigration detention system, which is impacted by all other parts of the deportation machinery.

As we embark on this paradigm shift for a new reality on immigration, cuts in funding to Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and the dismantling of the immigration detention system are paramount. Although not included in today’s day one agenda, we look forward to seeing the Biden administration address the inhumane and unjust detention system that separates thousands of people from their loved ones and subjects people to abuse and egregious conditions.”



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 Follow on Twitter @DetentionWatch.