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Livestream today’s @USCCRgov hearing on #Immigration detention.

Absolutely devastating testimony so far regarding conditions in #CoreCivic’s Eloy immigrant prison. /1
2/ A woman imprisoned in Eloy was 7 months pregnant and losing weight. Officials said she was offered a high-protein diet. It turned out to be an extra piece of bread with cheese.
3/ Next witness, a grandmother who traveled to Dilley, Antelope Wells, Homestead, and Tornillo with groups of concerned citizens, including @TornilloWitness, describes conditions as reminding her of Ethiopian detention camps in the 1980s. Reading letter from watchdog Josh Rubin.
4/ Margaret Siler of Brooklyn picks up Joshua Rubin’s statement re UAC detention camps. In violation of Flores, kids are kept as long as 10 months.

“They are prisoners.”

Kids have told Rubin & colleagues they’re threatened with more time in the child camps if they misbehave.
5/ Denial of adequate feminine hygiene products, diapers, and being issued soiled undergarments are the norm, based on personal stories of detained people. One woman who vomited blood, was told to take Tylenol and water. Diagnosed w cancer once she got out.
6/ @HowardUniv student describes work in Tijuana advising asylum-seekers of the bleak conditions they could expect in detention.

None of these factors deterred the asylum-seekers. They were running for their lives.
7/ Feb 18, 2019 - 700 asylum-seekers passed through a respite center near the border in a period of 7 hours. These were people who’d just been released from detention. Witness explains documented violations of Performance-Based National Detention Standards. Many kids w no shoes.
8/ Oh wow. This witness is a HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT. Applause in the room.
9/ Next witness from El Paso Military Families for Families encourages @USCCRgov subcommittee members to personally go to detention centers. Offers evidence of military plans to cage migrant kids on unremediated superfund sites.
10/ Alliance for Family Reunification rep offers testimony regarding allegations of mistreatment of migrant kids held in Virginia. Complete lack of transparency in child migrant detention.
11/ Yet another HS student offers heartbreaking testimony of mistreatment of asylum-seekers.
12/ Mexican trans woman asylum-seeker describes “despicable treatment” including repeated groping by multiple officers to determine whether they underwent sex reassignment surgery. An officer tightened their handcuffs so hard their hands turned blue. Threatened w solitary at CCA
13/ 12-hour gap without food forced people to buy unhealthy, marked up commissary food items at CCA’s Otay facility. Powerful testimony. She stresses that all members of @USCCRgov should VISIT a detention center and see for themselves the horrors of this treatment.
13/ Next up is (hero lawyer) Laura Rivera of @splcenter Imm Justice Project. Asylum-seeking clients spent days inside cages only to be shuttled like human cargo to for-profit immigration prisons Louisiana. A client w T1D hospitalized after jailors failed to control. . .
14/ Another @splcenter client lost the ability to walk because of uncontrolled gout he suffered in ICE prisons.
@RefugeesIntl rep now offers testimony of two African asylum-seekers-one a gay man, another a political journalist-who passed their initial interviews. One has been in immigration prison for over 2 years. “they’ve done nothing wrong. They’ve committed no crime.”
16/ ICE’s refusal to parole asylum-seekers who present at a port of entry has resulted in years of detention.

@RefugeesIntl contrasta American help for countrymen suffering Ebola in his country and the reality of his imprisonment here.

Detention as deterrence can’t work.
17/ Next witness, an advocate from VA/AZ offers four recommendations to improve 2015 report:
1. Accurately describe the detained population to include more than just border-crossers.
2. Add measurements of pervasiveness of unconstitutional practices (as opposed to anecdotes)
18/ 2. (Cont’d) best place to start is @DHSOIG Jan 2019 report identifying 14k violations in 106 facilities.
3. Rank-order findings. Sort in order of importance. Start w Constitutional violations. Recommendations need to be clearer.
4. Create an executive summary people can read
19/ @TheYoungCenter witness now testifying about “undesired expertise” in reunifying separated kids, including babies, with their undisputed parents.
20/ Robin, a Salvadoran Asylum-seeker who fled in 2015, now testifies about being imprisoned in iceboxes, insulted by CBP, and accused of being smugglers. Describes being stripped naked in front of other men and laughed at by the officers in ICE prison in TX.
21/ Once at an ICE center in New Jersey, Robin was called “faggot” by a guard.

Later, when he was assaulted and threatened by another detained immigrant, Robin was told by a guard “Speak English”. Then had to wait 2 days to file his complaint. Once he did, thrown in the hole.
22/ Robin was then transferred to Essex, where he got very sick. But he wasn’t taken to the clinic because it was “closed”. He was later diagnosed w a severe infection.

Robin spent 10 months in detention because he couldn’t pay the $7k bond. He had to fight his case alone.
23/ Just before Robin’s last Hearing @humanrights1st accept his case pro bono, helped him win asylum.

Robin knew his rights. But many officers/guards insulted him bc was not fluent in English.

Robin’s analysis is simple: The govt pays detention operators to CARE, not HARM.
24/ @Earthjustice testifies next re unremediated superfund sites on military bases where the regime proposes to jail migrant children. Read the report on Goodfellow AFB here:

The infants and kids may be harmed by acute & chronic contact w lead detected.
25/ @Earthjustice sued the military for records relating to toxic sites at military bases where the regime wants to imprison children.

Urges @USCCRgov to dive into envtl risks to kids caged at proposed sites.
26/ Back after a brief break. 1st witness is Eduardo, a survivor of kidnapping and torture in his home country of Mexico. Once he presented for asylum, he was imprisoned by ICE in Orange County. His testimony was devastating. Sexual assault, solitary confinement, and ridicule.
27/ Eduardo is a cherished member of the @AlOtroLado_Org family.

You can hear more of his story here:

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