After a PHR volunteer psychologists was told by officials at a New Jersey detention center that she would have to provide her social security number in order to gain entrance to the facility, the ICE Public Advocate responded within minutes to PHR's request for his assistance. By the end of the day PHR's psychologist was allowed entrance.
On February 15-16 stakeholders from around the world will gather in DC to participate in the “Forensic Evidence in the Fight Against Torture” conference, co-sponsored by the International Council for Torture Victims and American University Washington College of Law.
Ripped Apart by the Immigration System: Immigrant Parents of US-Citizen Children Should be Afforded Prosecutorial Discretion
Reports and criticisms of the immigration system tend to focus on the hardships felt by the detainees themselves, incarcerated and facing possible deportation. Far less attention, however, has been paid to their children. A recent study conducted by the Applied Research Center shows that 25% of individuals deported in 2011 left behind a US-citizen child. Because Child Protective Services (CPS) cannot legally place these children with undocumented family members such as aunts, uncles, or grandparents, the children end up falling into the general ranks of an expensive and already overcrowded foster care system.
Bipartisan efforts are few and far between these days, but finally, there seems to be one issue that House Democrats and Republicans can agree upon: no one held in US custody should be at risk for rape or sexual assault.
Due to the relatively closed nature of the system, there is very little publicly available data detailing the extent of sexual abuse in immigration detention centers. However, recently uncovered documents reveal nearly 200 official complaints of sexual abuse in detention facilities since 2007. This number is probably just the tip of the iceberg given that sexual abuse is one of the most underreported crimes in the US.