Rabbi Leslie Bergson and I spent this morning in Newark protesting the inhumane treatment of immigrants in the detention centers. The event was organized by Bend The Arc. Twenty-Four immigrants have died in ICE custody. That is 24 too many deaths.
"About three days ago I got a fever. They moved me along to a flu cell. There is no one to take care of you there. They just give you pills twice a day. I also am having an allergic reaction all over my skin. My skin is itchy and red and my nose is stuffed up. Two times they gave me a pill for it but not anymore." Written by an 11 year old boy.
"I'm hungry here at Clint (detention center) all the time. I'm so hungry that I have woken p in the middle of the night with hunger. Sometimes I wake up from hunger at 4:00 AM., sometimes at other hours. I'm too scared to ask the officials here for any more food, even though there is not enough food here for me." Written by a 12 year old boy.
"We are in a metal cage with 20 other teenagers with babies and young children. We have one mat we need to share with each other. it is very cold. We each got a mylar blanket, but it is not enough to warm up. There are benches but we cannot sleep here. Sometimes it is so crowded we cannot find a place to sleep, so they allow a few of us to sleep outside the fenced area. The lights are (on) all of the time." Written by a 16 year old girl.
"They took us away from our grandmother and now we are all alone. They have not given us to our mother. We have been here for a long time. I have to take care of my little sister. She is very sad because she misses our mother and grandmother very much. We sleep on a cement bench. There are two mats in the room, but the big kids sleep on the mats so we have to sleep on the cement bench."
Written by an 8 year old boy.
This cannot be just a political issue. This is about how we treat people who have come here to escape the terrors of their homelands.