Karla H. Edwards | Visit No. 4 to Detention Center

Letters to the Editor
Letters to the Editor

Adelanto Detention Center Visit – Oct. 29 – Men’s Facility:

This was my fourth visit to the above center. There was a new set of challenges, before even getting into the room where the families and volunteers sit down to talk with their family member or a detainee.

The check-in procedure took the better part of an hour, before we even went through the metal detector. One of the volunteers in my group was called first and she proceeded through the metal detector and past several locked doors, down the hallway to the visitor room.

The second volunteer was called about 30 minutes later, and I was left waiting in the lobby for over two hours.

After asking at the check-in desk several times, I was informed that the detainee from Vietnam who I was scheduled to talk with had been released.

The other detainee (from Afghanistan) was in a meeting with his attorney, which was, of course, much more important that my visit.

When we finally met, Mr. M told me about his wife and their four children. The youngest, a boy, is 2 years old.

Mr. M came to the United States seeking asylum. He had been in the army and, as a result, was seen as an enemy of the Taliban. His life was in danger in his native Afghanistan.

As a civil engineer in his country of origin, he had been working on an invention and was in the process of looking for an electrician who could work with him to finish his project.

During our visit, I learned that the detainees are allowed to spend time outdoors twice a week, for two hours. They sleep in bunk beds, in a locked cell.

There are no bathrooms, as such: the toilets are in an open area near the beds.

Try to imagine, for yourself, what the daily life is like for these prisoners. (You can call them “detainees” if you’d like, but I think “prisoner” is a better description.) They are not being deported, as many believe. Please do your own research!

How many of these centers are there? How much are the for-profit detention centers earning each day, per detainee (your tax dollars, by the way). How many suicides have occurred? How many suicides have been attempted? 

Karla H. Edwards


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