Our latest press releases on important news and events relating to immigration detention in the United States

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ICE Retaliates Against Immigrant Rights Advocates by Suspending Visitation Program at Etowah Detention Center, Advocates Demand the Program Be Reinstated Ahead of the Holidays

December 2, 2019

Gadsden, AL — In retaliation of a group of volunteer visits that was followed by a rally outside of the Etowah Detention Center in November, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the Etowah County Sheriff's Office have suspended the Etowah Visitation Project. On behalf of the Etowah Visitation Project, Freedom for Immigrants issued a cease and desist letter today to ICE and the Etowah County Sheriff's Office.

Stirring testimony from inside the Stewart Detention Center underscores ongoing abuse and racist judge  

October 28, 2019

Lumpkin, Georgia — As people detained at the Stewart Detention Center (Stewart) headed into the 26th day of being denied access to outdoor recreation, a group of people currently detained there filed a formal complaint with a federal watchdog agency today detailing abuse by facility staff and deepening the existing criticism of Immigration Judge Dan Trimble. The complaint, lodged with the U.S.

Rising trend: Immigrants protest their incarceration with hunger strikes at ICE detention centers across the country

October 21, 2019

Tacoma, Washington — Today, more than 100 people detained at the Northwest Detention Center (NWDC) entered their fourth day on hunger strike from inside the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) facility operated by GEO Group. This is the 13th hunger strike to occur this year alone (see list of hunger strikes below) that immigrant rights’ advocates are aware of in over nine states, indicating the rising use of hunger strikes as a protest tactic to denounce immigration detention.

Second death in ICE custody for FY20: Suicide at Louisiana Immigration Jail

October 17, 2019

Monroe, Louisiana — Detention Watch Network and Congreso de Jornaleros at the New Orleans Workers' Center for Racial Justice are demanding an immediate investigation into the death of Roylan Hernández Diáz, a 43-year-old man from Cuba. Hernández Diáz died on October 15 while in Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) custody after being detained at the Richwood Correctional Center in Monroe, Louisiana. ICE is reporting Hernández Diaz’s death as a suicide, who was being held in solitary confinement at the time, a practice internationally recognized as torture.

After sustained local activism, Gov. Newsom signs bill banning private prisons for immigration detention in CA

October 11, 2019

Sacramento, CA — Today, after years of sustained local activism led by immigrant rights groups, Gov. Gavin Newsom signed groundbreaking legislation that will ban the use of private immigrant jails in California starting in the New Year, eventually entirely phasing out their use in the state. On the heels of HB2040 in Illinois, California’s AB32 builds momentum towards dismantling the profit motives that are deeply intertwined with mass incarceration and immigration detention.

The first death in ICE custody for Fiscal Year 2020 occurs in California as the state awaits passage of legislation to ban private detention

October 2, 2019

San Diego, CA — Detention Watch Network and Inland Coalition for Immigrant Justice are demanding an immediate investigation and public release of the findings related to the death of 37-year-old man from Cameroon in Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) custody. Buzzfeed reported the man died after being detained at the Otay Mesa Detention Center (Otay) in San Diego. 

ICE Must Answer for its Abuses

September 25, 2019

Washington, DC — At a House Judiciary Committee hearing scheduled for Thursday morning, members of Congress will hear testimony from immigrants who have been detained in the abusive U.S. immigration detention system and have the opportunity to question former government officials who have played a role in the rapid expansion of that system.

Immigration Advocacy Groups Call on Congress to Conduct Robust Oversight of ICE Detention in their Districts

September 24, 2019

Washington, DC — During a briefing with members of Congress, the National Immigrant Justice Center, Detention Watch Network, Freedom for Immigrants, and the American Civil Liberties Union  called for routine visits to Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) jails in their districts and states. The coalition of organizations is calling this effort the “Eyes on ICE Detention Oversight Initiative,” and will be working with members of Congress to follow their visits with concrete actions to improve oversight and accountability of immigration detention centers.