ACLU

Otay Mesa Detention Center experiences first detained migrant death from COVID-19

The first confirmed death in an ICE detention center from COVID-19 has been reported at Otay Mesa Detention Center in San Diego. Otay Mesa is run by the private, for-profit contractor, CoreCivic. A 57-year-old person in immigration custody died Wednesday, May 6 from complications related to the coronavirus, authorities said, marking the first reported death from the virus among about 30,000 people in immigration custody….


ACLU: Release COVID-19 at-risk detainees (Updated 4/13 — Detainees released.)

Updated Monday, April 13….ACLU clients, Yusuf Ozdemir and Jane Doe, were released the night of Thursday, April 9; and Miguel Angel Benitez and Issis Yoselin Zelaya Sagastume were released the following Friday night. “Our plaintiffs’ release from custody is a victory for them and their families,” said Monika Y. Langarica, immigrants’ rights staff attorney with the ACLU Foundation of San Diego & Imperial Counties. “We urge ICE to continue…


ACLU to ICE: Get Coronavirus act together

Today, Wednesday, March 11, the ACLU Foundation of California sent letters to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) immigration detention center officials urging them to develop a comprehensive emergency plan for the prevention and management of potential Coronavirus (or COVID-19) cases at its detention centers. In the letters, the ACLU asks for written responses from ICE and other detention center officials that explain how they…


San Diego police stop black people at a rate 219 percent higher than white people

“They did what human beings looking for freedom, throughout history, have often done. They left.” These are the words of Pulitzer Prize-winning author Isabel Wilkerson in her book, “The Warmth of Other Suns.” The book follows the story of three Black Southerners and their journey escaping racial violence — a sharecropper’s wife who left Mississippi in the 1930s for Chicago, an agricultural worker who left…


Feds sued for targeting journalists at border

When the government tries to circumvent constitutional protections, we must hold it accountable. No journalist should have to fear government interference for having the persistence, courage, and commitment to expose the truth. — ACLUF-SDIC As part of a coordinated effort that undermined the freedom of the press, the U.S. government tracked, detained, and interrogated journalists who were reporting on conditions at the U.S.-Mexico border. Five…


ACLU steps up for stranded asylum seekers

The ACLU Foundation of San Diego & Imperial Counties (ACLUF-SDIC) filed a class-action lawsuit Tuesady against the U.S Department of Homeland Security. The suit demands that people seeking asylum who have been subjected to the Trump administration’s dangerous Remain in Mexico policy – referred to by the government as the “Migrant Protection Protocols” (MPP) – and who have expressed a fear of being returned to…


ACLU notes from Sacramento…parolee voting rights, police body cameras, etc.

State Assembly votes to restore voting rights to nearly 50,000 Californians on parole The California State Assembly passed Assembly Constitutional Amendment (ACA) 6, which would restore voting rights to nearly 50,000 Californians on parole. ACA 6, authored by Asm. Kevin McCarty (D-Sacramento), passed with a 54-16 vote. ACA 6 will next go through the California State Senate, where it will need a 2/3 majority to…


Take a good look — it’s US Constitution Day

Today is Constitution Day. Thousands of middle and high school students across San Diego County will better understand the wisdom, complexity and enduring relevance of the United States Constitution thanks to a special ACLU program pairing volunteer speakers with host teachers in celebration of Constitution Day. Since 2007, the ACLU of San Diego & Imperial Counties (ACLU-SDIC) has recruited attorneys, civic leaders, community advocates and others…


ACLU: Deportation fear stymies crime tips

The American Civil Liberties Union released a report today that shows fear of deportation is stopping immigrants from reporting crimes and participating in court proceedings. The report, “Freezing Out Justice: How Immigration Arrests at Courthouses Are Undermining the Justice System,” is based on data from a national survey of law enforcement officers, judges, prosecutors, and others, conducted jointly by the ACLU and the National Immigrant…


Deported Army vet Barajas gets citizenship

Deported U.S. Army veteran Hector Barajas, who has been living in Mexico the last eight years, today received word from the Department of Homeland Security on March 29 that he was being granted U.S. citizenship. He is scheduled to be sworn in as a citizen in a few weeks in San Diego. Barajas, a decorated vet who received an honorable discharge after serving nearly six…