Florida – Today, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) announced that usage of Glades County Detention Center in Moore Haven, Florida along with Etowah County Detention Center in Gadsden Ala., Winn Correctional Center in Winnfield, La., and Alamance County Detention Facility in Graham, N.C. are set to be paused, scaled back, or terminated.
After years of reported abuse at Glades County Detention Center, detention of immigrants there will be paused because of “persistent and ongoing concerns related to the provision of medical care at the facility.” Immigrant youth in Florida, alongside our partners with the ‘Shut Down Glades Coalition’, alongside organizers around the country have been exposing the neglect people were facing while detained at this detention center and many others.
Cynthia Garcia, National Campaign Manager for Community Protection of United We Dream, said:
“Today’s announcement about ICE pausing use of the Glades County Detention Centers, along with ending or scaling back use of three other immigrant jails in Alabama, Georgia, and North Carolina, is a direct result of our immigrant communities’ unstoppable organizing efforts and work to expose the neglect that immigrants face in ICE custody.
While immigrants like Héctor and Claudia faced abuse at Glades County Detention Center, we took action with partners and the ‘Shut Down Glades Coalition’ to ring the alarm and expose the conditions at Glades Detention Center.
The reality is that neglect, and abuse is rampant not just at detention centers in these four states, but across the country. That’s why our immigrant communities keep organizing and pushing the Biden administration to end the use of Glades Detention Center for good, to release and not transfer immigrants detained in the centers elsewhere, while putting an end to all immigrant detention across the country. ”
Héctor, Formerly Detained at Glades County Detention Center, said:
“While I was detained at Glades County Detention Center, I filed two civil liberties complaints for medical abuse and neglect. Immigrants at the detention center faced unimaginable abuses daily. I chose to speak up about what was happening because as a father, I wanted to live to see my children and family.
I see now how important it was for me to speak up and take part in the organizing efforts alongside others in detention to bring an end to detention not just for me, but for all immigrants. Today’s news is a result of all the organizing that is happening around the country.
Though I was only detained at Glades for 5 months, I was transferred to other detention centers – a common practice – with the same conditions, until I was ultimately deported and separated from my family permanently by the Biden administration. Detention is a cruel reality of our immigration system, and it must end. The cruelty needs to end immediately. We will only be safe when all detention centers are closed permanently, and when all deportations and family separations stop!”