Still Not Out Of "El Pozo": Immigrants With Mental Disabilities Face Continuing Threats to Their Health and Human Rights
Confinement in detention is among the most painful indignities that a mentally ill immigrant can suffer.
Today, October 6, marks the one-year anniversary of Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) announcement that it would undertake major reforms of the immigration detention system.
In the past 10 years, more than 100,000 US children---all of them full-fledged citizens---have suffered the destabilizing effects of losing one or both parents to deportation. According to the American Psychological Association, children who lose a caretaker face notably heightened risk of psychological distress, developmental delay and poor physical health.
At the center of the national debate over immigration policy are conflicting opinions about what is best for our national economic interests, but perhaps more interestingly, differences of opinion over our social and ethical obligations. President Obama waded into this debate with his Thursday speech, following a week of meetings with key stakeholders, on comprehensive immigration reform.
A 29-year-old mother of three from the Republic of Congo who was arrested, detained, accused of anti-government activities because of her ethnicity, tortured and raped repeatedly by military officers for more than a year before escaping and finding her way to the US to seek asylum.