New Texas "civil" Detention Center Unveiled - Reposted from Todo Austin

Texans United for Families (TUFF) protesting Wells Fargo in Austin, TX

Reposted from Todo Austin

  On March 13, 2012, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) unveiled its new “civil” detention center in Karnes County, Texas, located one hour southeast of San Antonio. By the end of the month the facility will hold male migrants who are either asylum-seekers or have been categorized as “low-risk.” Karnes County contracted with private prison giant the GEO Group to build this detention center, which sits upon 29 acres of land and has 608 beds, with the possibility to expand to 1200 beds. The detention center is heralded by ICE as a model facility that is demonstrative of its efforts to move towards “humane detention.” Despite its shiny exterior and the presence of volleyball courts and soccer fields, the GEO group’s troubled history and record of human rights violations within its facilities are cause for alarm. The promise of “humane detention” itself is an oxymoron that community members should challenge. A gilded cage is still a cage.

Read more here.

    However, it is important to point out that the majority of the cages that the GEO Group and Corrections Corporation of America (CCA), the nation’s largest private prison corporation, have constructed are not gilded. Human rights violations occur frequently in these facilities and deaths in detention are not an aberration. In December 2010, the ACLU of Texas sued the GEO Group after Jesús Manuel Galindo died in the Reeves County Detention Center (RCDC) after suffering from an epileptic seizure while in solitary confinement. Mr. Galindo was punished with solitary confinement after he complained about the facility’s failure to provide him with the necessary medication to control his seizures. RCDC had already been under scrutiny before Mr. Galindo’s death due to riots and the deaths of other people at the facility.  The T. Don Hutto Detention Center in Taylor, TX, has also been under intense scrutiny, first because of family detention and the sexual assault of two women by a CCA guard and most recently because another CCA guard sexually assaulted eight undocumented women while he transported them to the Austin airport. The Hutto facility is also lauded as an example of “civil” detention, and yet a lack of oversight and accountability led to human rights violations.

On any given day there are nearly 34,000 people detained in the U.S., which costs taxpayers billions of dollars, destroys families, and denigrates the humanity of those locked behind bars. Although alternatives to detention cost approximately $12 per day per person, ICE continues to rely on detention, which costs approximately $122 per day per person. Major investors in the private prison industry, such as Wells Fargo, also profit from immigration detention by paying lobbyists who help the GEO Group lobby in favor of policies that expand immigration detention. The federal government gives private prison companies nearly $5.5 million dollars every year to detain migrants therefore it is in these companies’ best interest to fill detention centers.

In Austin, members of Texans United for Families (TUFF), the labor and faith communities, students, and Occupy Austin have united to raise awareness about Wells Fargo’s pernicious practices and the private prison industry. TUFF has also joined Enlace’s national prison divestment campaign to call for companies to divest of their holdings from the GEO Group and CCA, and for community members to close their accounts with Wells Fargo. We cannot stand idly by as the players in the private prison industry assign a dollar value to human life and profit from human misery. The reasons why people risk their lives to come to the U.S. and the trauma they may have experienced along the way are conveniently erased and replaced with an alien registration number once they are detained. It is time to recognize immigration detention as a human rights violation and call for the end of its expansion.
 

Comments

The GEO Group and the prison industrial complex have already arrived in Canada

A few weeks ago, Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper and his Conservative majority government passed a universally-condemned, ideologically-driven new crime law, deceptively christened “Safe Streets and Communities Act”.  Harper used his acquiescing majorities in the House of Commons and Senator to pass the bill without any substantial debate.

Indeed, the GEO Group Inc., a major player in the private correctional services in the US, UK, Australia and South Africa, lobbied for the new law. The company has profited from 9/11, the economic meltdown and recent anti-immigrant crackdowns. It has profited from privatized corrections and detention operations in Australia, UK and South Africa, where it is also connected with the African country’s unveiling massive prison privatization efforts. In Glasgow, Scotland, the company is involved in an Immigration Removal Center. In the late 1990s, GEO was involved with Australia’s notorious Woomera Immigration Detention Center, once described by UN officials as a “great human tragedy” and likened to a “Nazi concentration camp”.

Harper is determined to shake up Canadian society and impose an oppressive petro-state and vindictive rightwing worldview.  The backward-looking law will create a prison industrial complex in Canada. It will introduce the so-called “war on drugs”, which has devastated the US and Mexico.

I’m an Ottawa-based Occupy activist. Today is day 30 of my indefinite hunger strike against Harper’s new law. My YouTube video has more details about the hunger strike. It can be viewed here: http://youtu.be/V-mcaeD16ro. I've also written to every Canadian MP and Senator, and am now waiting for the official response from the Prime Minister and Parliament of Canada. I published this letter on my personal blog, www.canadianprogressiveworld.com, which I also update with journal entries and relevant information.

I need your support to send a strong message to Harper and his rightwing legislators this message: thee Safe Streets and Communities Act has no place in Canada. Together, we can do it! Please watch the video. Share it as widely as possible. Via your Facebook Profiles, Pages and Groups. Through Twitter.  Post the video to your blog. Share it with your blogging and activist friends. Journalists too. And ask your friends to share it with their contacts. For email shares, the link is: http://youtu.be/V-mcaeD16ro. You can also connect with me on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. And I can be reached at: ronrich22@gmail.com.

And I urge you all to resist oppressive laws like Harper’s Safe Streets and Communities Act. We must resist them by any peaceful and democratic means necessary. Now is the time to build a society that nurtures hope instead of extinguishing it. It’s a moment to remind ourselves that an injustice visited upon a single Canadian or community is an injustice visited upon all of us. We must insist on a united and caring Canada that encourages all to set aside differences and prescribed labels. We must come together to create a society based on these core values: compassion, understanding, inclusion, diversity, fairness, accommodation of difference, democratic governance, respect for fundamental rights and the rule of law.

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The GEO Group and the prison industrial complex have already arrived in Canada

A few weeks ago, Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper and his Conservative majority government passed a universally-condemned, ideologically-driven new crime law, deceptively christened “Safe Streets and Communities Act”.  Harper used his acquiescing majorities in the House of Commons and Senator to pass the bill without any substantial debate.

Indeed, the GEO Group Inc., a major player in the private correctional services in the US, UK, Australia and South Africa, lobbied for the new law. The company has profited from 9/11, the economic meltdown and recent anti-immigrant crackdowns. It has profited from privatized corrections and detention operations in Australia, UK and South Africa, where it is also connected with the African country’s unveiling massive prison privatization efforts. In Glasgow, Scotland, the company is involved in an Immigration Removal Center. In the late 1990s, GEO was involved with Australia’s notorious Woomera Immigration Detention Center, once described by UN officials as a “great human tragedy” and likened to a “Nazi concentration camp”.

Harper is determined to shake up Canadian society and impose an oppressive petro-state and vindictive rightwing worldview.  The backward-looking law will create a prison industrial complex in Canada. It will introduce the so-called “war on drugs”, which has devastated the US and Mexico.

I’m an Ottawa-based Occupy activist. Today is day 30 of my indefinite hunger strike against Harper’s new law. My YouTube video has more details about the hunger strike. It can be viewed here: http://youtu.be/V-mcaeD16ro. I've also written to every Canadian MP and Senator, and am now waiting for the official response from the Prime Minister and Parliament of Canada. I published this letter on my personal blog, www.canadianprogressiveworld.com, which I also update with journal entries and relevant information.

I need your support to send a strong message to Harper and his rightwing legislators this message: thee Safe Streets and Communities Act has no place in Canada. Together, we can do it! Please watch the video. Share it as widely as possible. Via your Facebook Profiles, Pages and Groups. Through Twitter.  Post the video to your blog. Share it with your blogging and activist friends. Journalists too. And ask your friends to share it with their contacts. For email shares, the link is: http://youtu.be/V-mcaeD16ro. You can also connect with me on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. And I can be reached at: ronrich22@gmail.com.

And I urge you all to resist oppressive laws like Harper’s Safe Streets and Communities Act. We must resist them by any peaceful and democratic means necessary. Now is the time to build a society that nurtures hope instead of extinguishing it. It’s a moment to remind ourselves that an injustice visited upon a single Canadian or community is an injustice visited upon all of us. We must insist on a united and caring Canada that encourages all to set aside differences and prescribed labels. We must come together to create a society based on these core values: compassion, understanding, inclusion, diversity, fairness, accommodation of difference, democratic governance, respect for fundamental rights and the rule of law.

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Re: New Texas "civil" Detention Center Unveiled - Reposted from Todo Austin

 I would like to let you all know that like Occupy Wall Street that so much more can be done to create true justice and democracy for We the People World-wide!!!!
Just make signs and have them everywhere to be read that will Civil Rights in America come alive like it was in the 1960's.


 
The sign should say Google:Civil Rights for We the People supported by Dennis Kucinich,Ron Paul,Al Gore,Cynthia Ann McKinney and Bootstraps Fisher!!!!!!


 
Remember that those in power who want to cover-up the truth will try to stop the spreading of the absolute truth yet they will fail, look at the success of the Arab Spring to begin with.


Make this message viral please world-wide!!!!!!!!

Re: New Texas "civil" Detention Center Unveiled - Reposted from Todo Austin

 

 I would like to let you all know that like Occupy Wall Street that so much more can be done to create true justice and democracy for We the People World-wide!!!!
Just make signs and have them everywhere to be read that will produce Civil Rights in America to again come alive like it was in the 1960's.


 
The sign should say Google:Civil Rights for We the People supported by Dennis Kucinich,Ron Paul,Al Gore,Cynthia Ann McKinney and Bootstraps Fisher!!!!!!


 
Remember that those in power who want to cover-up the truth will try to stop the spreading of the absolute truth yet they will fail, look at the success of the Arab Spring to begin with.


Make this message viral please world-wide!!!!!!!!
Anonymous wrote:
 I would like to let you all know that like Occupy Wall Street that so much more can be done to create true justice and democracy for We the People World-wide!!!!
Just make signs and have them everywhere to be read that will Civil Rights in America come alive like it was in the 1960's.


 
The sign should say Google:Civil Rights for We the People supported by Dennis Kucinich,Ron Paul,Al Gore,Cynthia Ann McKinney and Bootstraps Fisher!!!!!!


 
Remember that those in power who want to cover-up the truth will try to stop the spreading of the absolute truth yet they will fail, look at the success of the Arab Spring to begin with.


Make this message viral please world-wide!!!!!!!!

 

Re: New Texas "civil" Detention Center Unveiled - Reposted from Todo Austin

 

Anonymous wrote:
 I would like to let you all know that like Occupy Wall Street that so much more can be done to create true justice and democracy for We the People World-wide!!!!
Just make signs and have them everywhere to be read that will Civil Rights in America come alive like it was in the 1960's.


 
The sign should say Google:Civil Rights for We the People supported by Dennis Kucinich,Ron Paul,Al Gore,Cynthia Ann McKinney and Bootstraps Fisher!!!!!!


 
Remember that those in power who want to cover-up the truth will try to stop the spreading of the absolute truth yet they will fail, look at the success of the Arab Spring to begin with.


Make this message viral please world-wide!!!!!!!!

 

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