By Milan Simonich of The New Mexican |
ARTESIA — Oil, farming and high school football are usually the hottest topics in this dusty town of 11,300 people. But now Artesia finds itself in the middle of the national debate on immigration policy.
Between 400 and 500 immigrants accused of illegally entering the United States were being held last week in a government compound here that, ironically enough, trains every U.S. Border Patrol agent. All of the immigrants being detained in Artesia are mothers and their children, a total of 191 families as of Friday.
Artesia Mayor Phillip Burch says many of those in custody at the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center paid thousands of dollars to immigrant smugglers who assured them that they would be accepted in the United States if only they made it to the border in South Texas.
When these mothers with children in tow reached what they thought was a safe haven, a new world full of bright promise, many walked right up to a Border Patrol agent to announce that they were immigrating to America, Burch said. Instead, they landed in the custody of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Read more
As Hunger Strike Enters 21st day, Detained Army Veteran Put in Solitary Confinement for Suggesting Work Stoppage in Addition to Hunger Strike
Tacoma, WA – As the hunger strike at the Northwest Detention Center enters its 21st day, Hassall Moses, detained immigrant and U.S. army veteran, faced swift retaliation after suggesting hunger striking detainees add a work stoppage to their peaceful protest. Attorneys visiting hunger strikers were informed that Mr. Moses had been pulled from the general population after attempting to print a letter calling for a work stoppage. Audio of Mr. Moses explaining being placed in solitary confinement has been obtained and is available upon request.
In the recording made on March 26th, Mr. Moses states he is in solitary confinement “Because I tried to type up a letter making a work stop protest.” He explains, “I got put into segregation Read more
by Priscila Mosqueda Published on Wednesday, March 19, 2014, at 4:29 CST
Immigrants in a for-profit detention center in Conroe are refusing to eat to protest conditions at the facility. The protests in Texas follow a similar hunger strike that began two weeks ago at a Tacoma, Washington, detention center. Both facilities are owned by scandal-plagued GEO Group, the second-largest private prison company in the world. The protests are part of a wave of hunger strikes that immigrants have started in detention centers across the nation to call attention to what they say is the unjust practice of locking up immigrants and separating families through deportation. Read more