Are there any proposals in Congress to reform the excessive cruelty of immigration detention in the USA? This is not new. My own experience with these systems goes back to the mid-1980s and Oakdale Federal Detention Center in Louisiana … We must reiterate whenever we can: the vast majority of immigration detainees have committed NO CRIME. Many long-term (two years or more) detainees have presented themselves at ports of entry and asked for asylum (a right under US and international law), so they are not even guilty of entering the US illegally. So, this cruel treatment of prolonged detention, solitary confinement, and the attempt by detainees to resist by refusing food, and then to be subjected to force-feeding…an action that has been equated to torture at Guantanamo and other sites associated with the “war on terror…” People who are refugees are now experiencing this torture at immigration detention centers… right here in our communities. And the congressional bargaining over border security is most certainly going to consider adding thousands more “detention beds” … perhaps as some sort of exchange for less “wall…” This is not a legitimate bargain. The privately-run, tax-payer funded, cruel and unusual detention of people seeking asylum in the US should never be expanded and it needs to be abolished.
Immigrants have gone on hunger strikes over the past month to protest conditions inside detention facilities, prompting officials to force-feed six of them through plastic nasal tubes at a Texas location, The Associated Press has learned.
More reporting by Bob Moore in Texas Monthly: