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Call On Louisiana Governor Edwards to Urge ICE to Free Detained Immigrants & Asylum-Seekers


©Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Tens of thousands of immigrants and asylum-seekers are trapped in ICE detention facilities across the U.S., where they cannot be physically distant from each other, face increased risk of contracting COVID-19 in overcrowded conditions, and have limited access to medical care. These jails run the risk of becoming incubators for COVID-19.

There are thousands of people detained in the state of Louisiana. As conditions at the Winn Correctional Center reportedly include poor hygiene and sanitation and inadequate and unresponsive health care, ICE continues to hold individuals at heightened risk of contracting COVID-19 there, including immunocompromised asylum-seekers living with HIV. There have been several documented instances of retaliation and abuse against detained individuals in the state who have sought to protest or even just request information about detention conditions in light of COVID-19.

Governor Edwards can use his public health authority to direct ICE to reduce its immigration detention population in facilities in the state, mitigate the otherwise inevitable spread of COVID-19, and protect immigrants and asylum-seekers.

While representing different organizational views and calls to action, AIUSA is joining together with Families Belong Together, Human Rights First, Human Rights Watch, Innovation Law Lab, ISLA Immigration Services and Legal Advocacy, National immigrant Justice Center, OCA — Asian Pacific American Advocates, Physicians for Human Rights, SPLC Action Fund, and the Women’s Refugee Commission to demand Governor Edwards to take action to protect immigrants and asylum-seekers in Louisiana.

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Last updated 7 May 2020

John Bel
Governor of Louisiana