Posted on May 16, 2016

Immigrant and LGBTQ Leaders to Launch Hunger Strike, Demand End to Immigrant Detention Contract Between Santa Ana and ICE

GetEQUAL, May 16, 2016

Immigrant and LGBTQ rights leaders will launch a hunger strike in the city of Santa Ana, California on Monday, May 16 at 8:00am (Pacific Time) at Sasscer Park (507 West 4th Street Santa Ana, CA 9270). Hunger strike participants and organizers have been at the forefront of campaigns to put an end to the detention of transgender immigrants both locally at the Santa Ana City Jail and nationally with DHS’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Their demands are as follow:

  1. That the Santa Ana City Council schedule a vote to cancel the city’s jail contract with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), which allows the city to profit from the detention of undocumented immigrants, including transgender women,
  2. That the Santa Ana City Council advocate for the release of transgender immigrant women from detention centers across the country, and
  3. That the Department of Homeland Security and ICE end the use of detention for transgender immigrant women, who face disproportionate amount of abuse and rights violations inside both private and public detention centers.

Who: Immigrant and LGBTQ rights leaders

What: Hunger Strike to call on Santa Ana City Council to end detention contract with ICE

When: Monday, May 16 at 8:00am (Pacific Time)

Where: Sasser Park–507 West 4th Street, Santa Ana, CA 92701

Organizers recently released a petition demanding an end to the ICE contract:

The city of Santa Ana, one of the most Latino and most immigrant cities in the country, contracts with ICE to detain immigrants at a rate of $105 per person per day. The facility maintains specific pods for transgender and queer detainees, and most recently came into national attention when it was highlighted on a Human Rights Watch report on the deplorable conditions transgender women face in the detention system, and when community members defeated a February attempt to expand the scope of immigrant detention in the facility.

“I support the hunger strike because I was also detained by ICE and know the abuses trans women face inside detention centers,” said Angela Pereira, an immigrant from Guatemala. “I want ICE to no longer be in Santa Ana and to end the detention and deprivation of trans women.”

Hunger strike participants issued the following statements in advance of the action:

Deyaneira Garcia, senior at Segerstrom High School and OCIYU’s youth organizer: “There is no such thing as a humane way to detain someone. Rather than provide cover for ICE and DHS, Santa Ana’s City Council members should stand with the community and become leaders in the fight against trans detention by rejecting ICE’s dirty money and ending their jail contract with the deportation agency.”

Jennicet Gutierrez, organizer with Familia: Trans Queer Liberation Movement: “I am committed to ending the abuse and injustices against our communities and fighting for liberation.”

Jorge Gutierrez, director of Familia: Trans Queer Liberation Movement: “I am participating in the hunger strike to ensure ICE no longer continues to terrorize our community here in Santa Ana and to end the abuse and detention of transgender undocumented women. We want an end to all raids, we want ICE out of Santa Ana and all of our communities. The Santa Ana City Council members need to cancel the ICE contract now and stand on the rights side of justice.”