Northwest Detention Center Resistance blocked Seattle streets earlier this week to highlight the plight of undocumented transgender immigrants in detention.
A group of activists blocked streets in Seattle, Washington, Monday afternoon to protest on behalf of transgender women locked in immigration detention facilities nationwide. They condemned what they say is a contractual quota for detainees. The protest comes as the Obama administration and immigration advocacy groups around the country are putting heightened attention on conditions that transgender immigrants face in detention facilities.
Dozens of transgender and cisgender women from the Trans and/or Women’s Action Camp, or TWAC, an advocacy group based in Washington state, blocked a street in downtown Seattle near the local headquarters for the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency. The Not1MoreDeportation movement, a national campaign aimed at reining in the federal government’s deportation policies, live streamed the protest on its website, showing activists chanting, “Queer and trans in isolation! Why does ICE incarcerate them?”
The Seattle demonstrators spoke out against the use of solitary confinement for transgender detainees, which in some facilities has been used as a means of separating transgender women from male detainees. In other cases, transgender women have said they were put into isolation as punishment for complaining about detention conditions. They spoke out against ICE as well as the GEO Group, one of the country’s largest private prison companies, which operates the Northwest Detention Center in Tacoma, Washington.
You can find more photos and video from this and other actions on the NWDC Resistance/Resistencia al NWDC Facebook page.