Biden Consideration of Family Detention ‘A Huge and Unconscionable Step Backward’

Please see below statement from Director for the Americas and Europe Yael Schacher:

“In visits to Karnes and Dilley prisons in Texas, where former administrations detained families seeking asylum, I saw traumatized children, some with colds and fevers, with little to play with or to do. I met with women who spoke of their mistreatment at the hands of CBP before they arrived and poor conditions of detention. Some women spent their brief meetings with me crying. Effective asylum screening is impossible in such a setting, since detention itself is traumatic and detainees lack access to sufficient social and legal support.

Family detention is inhumane. It is unfair and inefficient to conduct screenings about fear and eligibility for protection in family detention. Reinstating family detention would be a huge and unconscionable step backward by the Biden administration.”

For more information or to schedule an interview, please contact Sarah Sheffer at or +1 203 305 9880.

Cover Photo: Immigrant woman and children walk across a field at the South Texas Family Residential Center, which houses families who are pending disposition of their immigration cases, on Friday, Aug 23, 2019 in Dilley, TX. Photo by Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images.