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Action Alert: Immigrant Detained Inside Etowah County Detention Center Speaks Up as Activists Block Entrance

March 24, 2014

Immigrant Rights Groups Block Entrance to Etowah County Detention Center

Oscar Quintero, currently detained at one of the worst immigrant detention centers in the country, Etowah County Detention Center in Gadsden, Alabama joins the thousands of others across the country who are courageously taking risks every day to expose and denounce the abusive system of immigration detention.

Shortly after President Obama ordered a review for a more “humane” immigration enforcement system, Oscar’s powerful testimony sheds light to the fact that there is no humanity, no justice, and no dignity in detention!

Watch a live stream video of the blockade, as well as read bios and quotes from all participants at the action in front of Etowah.

Read more…

Congresswoman @RepRoybalAllard, Civil & Human Rights Leaders Call on Congress to #EndTheQuota on Immigration Detention Beds

March 11, 2014
March 11, 2014

Demand Comes as Congress Fails to Pass Comprehensive Reform Bill

Listen to and/or download the press briefing here:

Washington, DC – Congresswoman Lucille Roybal-Allard (CA-40), civil and human rights leaders, and a mother who spent six months in a government detention center today called on Congress to eliminate the arbitrary and costly immigration detention bed quota that mandates keeping 34,000 immigrants in jail on any given day. The groups’ demand coincides with today’s meeting of the House Appropriations Committee with Department of Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson, who oversees the DHS budget, including funding for maintaining the detention bed quota.

In the absence of leadership from Congress to pass a comprehensive immigration reform bill, the mass detention and deportation of individuals who should be on a path to citizenship continues at a rapid rate. As Republican leadership in the House of Representatives continue to hold reform hostage, reform advocates have begun to pursue all available avenues to achieve individual elements of reform to the current broken system. The elimination of the detention bed quota is one of several efforts underway to reform the system that should be overhauled in comprehensive legislation.  Read more…

via @LatinoAdvocacy1: Hunger Strikers Report Increased Retaliation, Including Threats of Forced Feeding

March 11, 2014

For Immediate Release

Contact: Maru Mora Villalpando, (206) 251 6658, Angelica Chazaro, (646) 496 5724

Available for interview: Sandy Restrepo, (206) 251 1627

ALERT! Hunger strikers threatened with forced feeding! Please call/e-mail ICE today!*


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As the hunger strike initiated last Friday by immigrants detained in the Northwest Detention Center enters its fourth day, attorney Sandy Restrepo reports strikers being threatened with forced feedings. Restrepo met with hunger strike leaders this morning, and described the conditions inside the center: “The guards are armed and dressed fully in black – essentially in riot gear. Immigrants on hunger strike are being pulled out for individual questioning by detention center officials, and threatened with forced feeding if they continue their protest. Asylum seekers are being threatened with denial of their cases.”

Even as they face increasing retaliation, hunger strikers remain determined. Through written communication, they have elaborated on their demands. Continuing to insist on an end to deportations, they also ask for release on bond, noting, “Without a bond we spend months, even 1 to 2 years locked up without knowing what’s going to happen to us and our families and without being able to economically support our families, causing them to fall deeper into poverty.” Read more…

Watch via @WRCommission: Locking Up Family Values – The Detention of Immigrant Families

March 8, 2014

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March 11: #EndTheQuota National Call-in Day

March 6, 2014


March 11th, 2014
#EndTheQuota National Call-in Day

President Barack Obama submitted his budget request for DHS and ICE to Congressional appropriators. Now, your Members of Congress need to hear from you. On Tuesday, March 11th, call your Senators and Representative and tell them Congress should eliminate the detention bed quota, which ensures funding to keep facebook-event34,000 immigrants locked up in ICE detention facilities on any given day. For more information go to:

What You Can Do to #EndTheQuota: Read more…

3/5 in #NJ: Day-Long Series of Events on #AshWednesday including Pilgrimage from #EllisIsland to the Elizabeth Detention Center

March 4, 2014

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Kathy O’Leary, Pax Christi NJ (English)       973-610-1684    

Vera Parra, PICO-NJ (English & Spanish)     917-519-7656    


Clergy, Faith Leaders, Youth and Activists calling for the Dismantling of the Detention and Deportation Machine that Feeds the Prison Industrial Complex

New Jersey- On Wednesday March 5th, people from across New Jersey representing over a dozen faith based, community youth and immigrant rights groups, including members from Pax Christi NJ, First Friends, PICO-NJ, American Friends Service Committee Immigrant Rights Program, Wind of the Spirit and NJ Advocates for Immigrant Detainees, will gather in four different cities, Camden, Elizabeth, Jersey City and Newark to call for the dismantling of the detention and deportation machine that is feeding the prison industrial complex.  For the fifth year in a row a group of pilgrims and well wishers will gather in Liberty State Park in Jersey City in front of the bridge to Ellis Island.  The pilgrims will walk from Ellis Island, one of our nation’s most powerful symbols of hope and freedom, to a symbol of fear and imprisonment, the Elizabeth Detention Center. This series of events is called “Sowing Injustice, Reaping Sorrow”.  Participants will be drawing attention to the interconnectedness of our county’s projection of military and economic power abroad with the flow of migrants and the way in which the detention and deportation machine feeds the prison industrial complex, tearing apart families in the process. Read more…

Obama Administration Includes Arbitrary Number of Detention Beds in Fiscal Year 2015 Budget #endthequota

March 4, 2014

logoorange_20101For Immediate Release

Tuesday, March 4, 2014


Obama Administration Includes Arbitrary Number of Detention Beds in Fiscal Year 2015 Budget 

Detention Watch Network Urges Congress to End the Quota and Reduce Wasteful Spending on the Incarceration of Immigrants

Washington, D.C. – Today the Obama Administration released its Fiscal Year (FY) 2015 budget request for the Department of Homeland Security. The proposal includes $ 1.8 billion for detention and maintains funding for 30,539 beds. In response to release of the FY 2015 budget proposal, Silky Shah, Interim Executive Director of Detention Watch Network (DWN) states:

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