When reports surfaced last year that a guard at the T. Don Hutto Detention Center in Texas had sexually assaulted several detainees there, advocates familiar with the US’s immigration detention system were saddened, but not surprised. There has been a steady stream of news reports over the past several years of similar assaults on immigrants in custody.
As the rhetoric surrounding U.S. immigration policy continues to heat up, what is often forgotten is the impact our laws have on the most vulnerable, the children.
When human rights advocates talk about providing humanitarian protection to vulnerable immigrants, they are usually concerned with threats to the health and well-being posed by other humans, whether they are security forces, gang members, or abusive spouses.
New beginnings are normally met with optimism and hopes for something better to come.
Ms. R came to the US from her home country in central Africa where, in her early teenage years, she was subjected to a horrifying sexual initiation ritual.