Community organizers from Never Again Action Rhode Island appeared at the Statehouse on Tuesday to demand that the Wyatt Bills be brought to a vote on the floor of the house. The bills, HB 5749, HB 5776, and HB 5750, introduced by State Rep. Joshua Giraldo of Central Falls, would respectively ban private prisons and shut down the Wyatt Detention Center, ban RI institutions from investing in private prisons, and ban all contracts with ICE in Rhode Island.

House committees heard testimony on these bills in March, with citizens from around the state testifying on the deep moral cost of profiting from the misery of prisons and ICE detention, and residents of Central Falls speaking particularly to the cruelty of locating the Wyatt in a community already disproportionately targeted by our country’s racist criminal justice and immigration policies.

Now, more than three months later, all three bills are being held for “future study,” and this year’s legislative session is drawing to a close. While our elected officials chose to ignore the Wyatt Detention Center, it tripled its population of ICE detainees — from 34 to over 100 in June alone — and is poised to further expand its population.  Never Again Action Rhode Island is committed to making it impossible for legislators to ignore their moral obligation to end the practice of ICE detention in our state.

Related: Fil Eden Never Again Action RI Joined The Coalition! (Originally Broadcast 2019)

 

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