Immigrant detention center in Va. would be mid-Atlantic’s largest

Posted: July 18, 2010 in Immigration in the United States
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Wow, look at how big these beds are!

By Kevin Sieff

Washington Post Staff Writer

Sunday, July 18, 2010

The largest immigrant detention center in the mid-Atlantic will soon open in Prince Edward County, an effort to accommodate Virginia’s unprecedented surge in detentions of illegal immigrants picked up on criminal charges.

The $21 million, privately run center will house up to 584 immigrant detainees when it opens its doors. Over the next year, it might grow to hold 1,000 prisoners, most of them snagged by the federal government’s growing Secure Communities program, which aims to find and deport criminal illegal immigrants.

Last month, Virginia became the second state, after Delaware, to implement the program statewide, requiring jails and prisons to screen prisoners by immigration status and check their fingerprints against the country’s immigration database.

The immigration debate has grown increasingly polarized, and the Secure Communities program has become a symbol of that division. John T. Morton, head of ICE, calls it the agency’s attempt to “secure the nation and protect public safety.” But many immigrant advocates, including Enid Gonzalez, a lawyer at CASA of Maryland, say the program “claims to keep violent criminals off the streets, but instead it’s just incarcerating innocent busboys.”

via Immigrant detention center in Va. would be mid-Atlantic’s largest.

So, a giant detention facility made especially for illegal immigrants.  This will create over 300 jobs in the area, nice… nice.  I am so sick of this bullshit and rhetoric behind these sorts of institutions, making it look really good to have this facility, when in reality there are bound to be some major problems with putting people who come from all these different cultures together in one place – oh wait, that’s America.

We don’t need to be wasting our taxdollars and time on specialized institutions for this purpose.  Does the need to have separate facilities from our prisons for ‘wrong-doing’ illegal immigrants indicate that there is a problem with our current prison system, or that maybe these new institutions are greater than or less than our current prison system?

Imagine the types of people that will be put together within this facility… if ICE can easily be blamed for capturing non-offensive ‘illegal-immigrants,’ by multiple media and social outlets, does this mean that we will be having major offenders alongside non-major offenders?  Where will the children go in this case?

As I learn more information about this facility, I will keep you posted.

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