The following video was posted on Wednesday afternoon. It shows former immigrant detainees confronting Department of Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson in Washington, D.C., and asking him to cut DHS’ contracts with private immigration prisons. It gets a bit uncomfortable, but it is powerful and real.
Last month, Johnson has already instructed DHS to review and evaluate the issue of private prisons, but a final report won’t be shared until after Election Day. The former detainees in the video asked Johnson to just make a decision now.
“My son has spent over a year and three months in a privately run detention center in Georgia,” explained Cindy Barrientos, a member of Georgia Latino Alliance of Human Rights. “I asked the Secretary to look into his case and free him because I want him home.”
According to the organizers of this video, “the sidewalk exchange came after the group delivered 200,000 petitions with the same demand collected by Color of Change, BAJI, Mijente and the #Not1More Campaign, ACLU, Presente, Daily Kos, and America’s Voice as well as an organizational letter from Detention Watch Network with over 350 organizations co-signing.”