Challenging the Government’s Barriers to Access to Counsel in Immigration Detention Centers

Americans for Immigrant Justice, et al., v. U.S. Dep’t of Homeland Security, et al., Case 1:22-cv-03118


Each day, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) lock up thousands of immigrants across the United States in detention centers as they await adjudication of their civil immigration proceedings. The outcome of those proceedings is often life and death. Yet ICE has implemented policies that make it extremely difficult—and in many cases impossible—for people in immigration detention to access their attorneys.

Four legal services providers represented by the American Immigration Council, with the ACLU National Prison Project, the ACLU of the District of Columbia, the ACLU of Florida, the ACLU of Texas, the ACLU of Arizona, and Millbank LLP, filed a lawsuit challenging the barriers to access to counsel at four detention centers—Krome Detention Center in Florida, Florence Correctional Center in Arizona, River Correctional Center in Louisiana, and Laredo Process Center in Texas.

By preventing immigrants in detention from privately communicating with their attorneys by phone, videoconferencing, and even in person, ICE is violating the Constitution and its own detention standards.

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