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Beverly Hills, California, United States
Eli Kantor is a labor, employment and immigration law attorney. He has been practicing labor, employment and immigration law for more than 36 years. He has been featured in articles about labor, employment and immigration law in the L.A. Times, Business Week.com and Daily Variety. He is a regular columnist for the Daily Journal. Telephone (310)274-8216; eli@elikantorlaw.com. For more information, visit beverlyhillsimmigrationlaw.com and and beverlyhillsemploymentlaw.com


Thursday, April 25, 2024

County in rural New Mexico extends agreement with ICE for immigrant detention amid criticism

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — County commissioners in rural New Mexico extended authorization for a migrant detention facility Wednesday in cooperation with federal authorities over objections by advocates for immigrant rights who allege inhumane conditions and due process violations at the privately operated Torrance County Detention Facility. The 3-0 vote by the Torrance County commission clears the way for a four-month extension through September of an agreement with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement for the detention of migrants at the facility. At a public meeting, advocates renewed criticism that the facility has inadequate living conditions and provides limited access to legal counsel for asylum-seekers who cycle through. Critics of the detention center have urged federal immigration authorities to end their contract with a private detention operator, while unsuccessfully calling on state lawmakers to ban local government contracts for migrant detention. ADVERTISEMENT The ACLU announced Tuesday that it had uncovered documents from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement that show a 23-year-old Brazilian migrant didn’t receive adequate mental health care prior to his suicide in August 2022 at the Torrance County Detention Facility after being denied asylum. Contacted by email Wednesday, ICE representatives had no immediate response to the allegations by the ACLU. READ MORE FILE - The Federal Correctional Institution is seen in Dublin, Calif., Monday, April 15, 2024. Nearly all inmates have been transferred out of the troubled women's prison set to be shut down in California, and U.S. senators on Wednesday, April 24, demanded an accounting of the rapid closure plan for the facility where sexual abuse by guards was rampant. (AP Photo/Terry Chea, File) Senators demand accounting of rapid closure plan for California prison where women were abused FILE - Richard Katsuda, educator and co-chair of Nikkei for Civil Rights and Redress opens the LA Day of Remembrance at the Japanese American National Museum in Los Angeles, Feb. 18, 2023. The names of thousands of people held in Japanese American incarceration camps during World War II will be digitized and made available for free, genealogy company Ancestry announced Wednesday, April 24, 2024. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes, File) Ancestry website cataloguing names of Japanese Americans incarcerated during World War II Sister Helen Prejean, right, talks as Richard Obot, left, detainee in Division Of Correction 11, listens to her during a book club at Department Of Corrections Division 11 in Chicago, Monday, April 22, 2024. DePaul students and detainees are currently reading Dead Man Walking and the author, anti death penalty advocate, Sister Helen Prejean attended to lead a discussion. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh) College students, inmates and a nun: A unique book club meets at one of the nation’s largest jails The ACLU urged federal authorities reconsider its contract the Torrance County facility based on a “mortality review” by ICE’s health services corps of circumstances leading up to the death of Kelsey Vial during the migrant’s monthslong detention. The document describes Vial’s symptoms and treatment for depression while awaiting removal to Brazil and concludes that detention center staff “did not provide Mr. Vial’s health care within the safe limits of practice.” County Commissioner Sam Schropp said events described by the ACLU took place nearly two years ago and don’t reflect current conditions at the facility that he has witnessed during his own unannounced visits. He described numerous accounts of desperation among migrants related to food, water and health care access within the facility as “hearsay.” ADVERTISEMENT “The accounts which you attribute to the federal government will not be changed by closing of (the Torrance County Detention Facility). Those detainees will be moved to another facility and there will be no one like me appearing,” Schropp said. The ACLU’s Mike Zamore petitioned a top ICE official to conduct a new review of the detention center before extending the contract beyond May. “While this review continues, ICE should let the contract for Torrance expire,” wrote Zamore, national director of policy and government affairs for the ACLU. “From a good governance perspective, it makes no sense to renew a contract for operations that have repeatedly resulted in dangerous conditions and chronic violation of federal standards.” The detention center at Estancia can accommodate at least 505 adult male migrants at any time, though actual populations fluctuate. ADVERTISEMENT Torrance County Manager Janice Barela said federal authorities proposed terms of the four-month extension of the services agreement for immigrant detention. County government separately contracts for jail space unrelated to immigration at the detention center, which is the county’s largest payer of property taxes. by Taboola Suggested For You For more information, visit us at https://www.beverlyhillsimmigrationlaw.com/.

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