August 3, 2012
BREAKING: Viridiana Martinez to be Released From Broward Detention Center
Public move displays hypocrisy of immigration officials
BROWARD, Fl.—Viridiana Martinez is being released from Broward Transitional Center right now. She will be outside after weeks of fighting for the release of hundreds of people inside the facility. Her release exemplifies the hypocrisy of detention policy; Immigration and Customs Enforcement only follows federal guidelines when it is forced to act in public. The National Immigrant Youth Alliance will continue to demand the release of all eligible detainees.
The organizers are demanding to remain until all low-priority detainees are released. Detainees like Leobardo Ocampo (A# 205-128-084) should be released alongside her as equally low-priority detainees.
In order to challenge Immigration and Customs Enforcement and GEO Group, Inc. which owns the facility, we have placed multiple NIYA members inside Broward Transitional Center to find people who are eligible for deferred action, are low-priority cases. In this one facility alone, we have found over 100 cases of people who, according to the Obama policies of the past year, should be released back to their families.
Viridiana and the other organizers inside Broward have found:
• people who have pending application for a U Visa;
• More than a dozen DREAM Act eligible youth;
• Over 60 individuals with no criminal record or prior deportations, some detained as passengers in vehicles;
• More than 3-dozen cases in which individuals are still eligible for discretion despite previous contacts with the system;
• Several cases of immigrants in need of immediate medical care, including one individual with a blood clot in his leg and a bullet in the spine;
Viridiana has been organizing alongside Claudio Rojas, a father of two who has been detained since February 10 and Marco Saavedra, a graduate of Kenyon College in Ohio and member of DreamActivist Ohio. Rojas was detained in 2010 after his son was stopped at a port checkpoint, the same checkpoint Viridiana Martinez allowed herself to be detained. Claudio has been fighting his own deportation to Argentina for over three years and has recently launched into a religious fast until he and others are released. Claudio, just like Viridiana and the other organizers within this facility are low-priority deportations and, according to President Obama, they should be dropped.
In accordance with the June 17th, 2011, memorandum issued by the Obama Administration, we now demand a full and complete review of each detainee at the Broward Detention center and ask that all low-priority detainees immediately be released and their cases administratively closed.
NIYA will no longer allow GEO Group or other private prison corporations to profit off of shattered families and broken lives. We will continue to organize inside their jails until the president lives up to his promises. Case summaries along with the national petition can be found online at http://action.dreamactivist.org/btc
The National Immigrant Youth Alliance is an undocumented led network of 27 organizations in 24 states. As NIYA we believe the only way to safeguard our communities is to empower, educate and most importantly, escalate.