Louisiana immigrants may be among many others throughout the nation who have grown increasingly concerned about substandard conditions in many of the nation's detainment facilities. Immigration detention is used by the U.S. government to house people whose legal statuses are in question. However, stories of unsanitary and abusive conditions in many detention centers have continued to surface in recent months, including a situation involving the death of a young child.
The particular facility where the child had been living is designed to house mothers and children only. The center has the capacity to hold approximately 2,400 people, and the current detained population is approximately 1,500. The child died just after being released from the facility.
The Texas Department Family and Protective Services has opened an investigation. In the meantime, attorneys working for the distraught mother of the child say there is evidence that unsanitary conditions and neglect may have caused the child's death. The Immigration and Customs Enforcement field director at the facility claims the environment at the center is quite clean and that measures are taken every day to ensure the health and safety of detainees.
Any Louisiana resident currently facing an immigration detention situation understands how stressful it can be. Family members are often separated. In fact, there are currently many children still in the United States whose parents have already been deported. The U.S. government says it is working hard in such situations to reunite families. It is often less stressful to navigate the system for those who know how to access legal support.