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  • WRC Condemns the Administration’s Endorsement of the New Family Detention Center in Dilley & Expansion of Capacity at the Karnes Facility

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    "We are extremely disappointed and dismayed by the Administration’s decision to continue using detention in an effort to deter and discourage  women and children fleeing violence and abuse in their home countries from seeking protection in the United States. Secretary Johnson’s visit to the new Dilley facility and his enthusiastic endorsement to lock up mothers and children is further evidence that the Administration refuses to face the reality of what these facilities are - prisons for families."

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
    December 16, 2014
    Contact:
    Elizabeth Beresford; This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.; 917-648-0189
    Kayla Keller; This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.; 281-682-6212

    Women’s Refugee Commission Condemns the Administration’s

    Endorsement of the New Family Detention Center in Dilley and Expansion of Capacity at the Karnes Facility

    Washington, DC – Refugee women and children will soon begin to move into the new 2,400 bed family detention center opening in Dilley, Texas, the country’s newest and largest family detention center.  Meanwhile, the Karnes County, Texas commissioners voted today to expand the number of beds to detain more mothers and children in the Karnes City’s private, for-profit family detention center. This vote allows the Geo Corporation to begin construction to more than double the current capacity of the Karnes City, Texas family detention facility to over 1,000 detention spaces.

    Katharina Obser, program officer of the Migrant Rights and Justice Program at the Women's Refugee Commission, issued the following statement in response:

    “We are extremely disappointed and dismayed by the Administration’s decision to continue using detention in an effort to deter and discourage  women and children fleeing violence and abuse in their home countries from seeking protection in the United States.

    “Secretary Johnson’s visit to the new Dilley facility and his enthusiastic endorsement to lock up mothers and children is further evidence that the Administration refuses to face the reality of what these facilities are - prisons for families.  

    “Rather than continuing to invest hundreds of millions of dollars in expanding a current facility and constructing a new facility that arbitrarily locks up families, the Administration should release families or use alternativesthat better serve the mental and physical wellbeing of vulnerable families that have fled from some of the most dangerous parts of the world in search of safety.

    “Existing alternatives to detention cost an average of 17 cents to $21 a day compared to the nearly $300 per day, per person that Dilley costs, and have been found by the Department of Homeland Security to be 96 percent effective in ensuring appearance to immigration court.

    “The Administration must stop using family detention. The practice is not only inefficient and costly, it also wholly unconscionable and contrary to our core American values.”

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    The Women’s Refugee Commission works to improve the lives and protect the rights of women, children and youth displaced by conflict and crisis. For more information visit - http://womensrefugeecommission.org.