In the continuing onslaught of severe mistreatment by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), a group of 100 immigrants have initiated a hunger strike at the Northwest Detention Center in Tacoma, WA. Their demands are simple: faster legal action, and better food. The comments of the Seattle ICE spokeswoman, Rose Richeson, seem to not place any urgency on the matter and the group has declined to comment on the demands by the detainees.
On the event, Richeson says, “Right now, it’s more of a meal refusal thing that some of the detainees have done.” Per ICE guidelines, these actions won’t be considered an actual hunger strike until it has lasted for 72 hours. If anyone refuses food for more than three days, there are consequences. The ICE guidelines say that the individual can be isolated and eventually ordered into medical care.
The demands of the refugees for quicker legal proceedings are also very much a concern. In January, President Drumpf signed an executive order that prioritizes the deportation of illegal immigrants that are involved in a pending criminal case. There is no consideration made as to whether or not this immigrant is guilty or innocent of said crime. There also seems to be a problem with paperwork mysteriously becoming lost when individuals are transferred out of state suddenly. Many of these individuals have already waited months for their hearings, according to Maru Mora Villalpando, an activist who is communicating on behalf of the individuals being held.
It seems absurd that a group of our government is aware of these conditions, and won’t even consider acting until a set period of time has passed; that even then, they would rather send you to a hospital than offer reasonable food defies what I was raised to believe this country was about.
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