As U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement moves ahead with its plans to build a new 500 bed privately-owned detention center in the region, Wyomingites who don’t want to see an immigration prison in the state are fighting back.
On Saturday, the #WyoSayNo campaign, the ACLU of Wyoming, Saint Joseph’s parishioners and the CCW Association and will be hosting a letter writing party at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church in Cheyenne to encourage five of the state’s elected officials – Gov. Mark Gordon, Secretary of State Edward Buchanan, State Auditor Kristi Racines, State Treasurer Curt Meier and Superintendent of Instruction Jillian Balow – to say no to any prison company that wants to build an immigration prison in Wyoming.
Management & Training Corporation (MTC), the third-largest private prison corporation in the United States, has been the first to express interest in building the immigration prison outside Evanston. Private prison companies like MTC, Geo Group and CoreCivic put profit above lives, and an immigration prison would bring ICE closer to Wyoming’s Latino communities and will expand the ability to detain immigrants and break apart families in Wyoming.
“Private immigration prisons separate families and cause fear in residents who have documented and undocumented relatives. We don’t need a company like MTC that cannot manage its facilities properly and is responsible for human rights violations coming here to tell us what is best for our community and our state,” said Antonio Serrano, organizer for the ACLU of Wyoming. “Letters and emails sent directly to our public officials can be a very useful advocacy tactic and can be extremely effective in making change in our state. We want to make sure Wyoming voices are heard.”
IF YOU GO
WHAT: WyoSayNo Letter Writing Party
WHEN: 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., Saturday, Aug. 3
WHERE: St. Joseph’s Catholic Church, 603 House Ave., Cheyenne
FOR INFORMATION: Go to https://www.facebook.com/WyoSayNo/.
About the ACLU of Wyoming
The American Civil Liberties Union of Wyoming is a non-partisan, nonprofit organization dedicated to the preservation and enhancement of civil liberties and civil rights. The ACLU of Wyoming is part of a three-state chapter that also includes North Dakota and South Dakota. The team in Wyoming is supported by staff in those states.
The ACLU believes freedoms of press, speech, assembly, and religion, and the rights to due process, equal protection and privacy, are fundamental to a free people. In addition, the ACLU seeks to advance constitutional protections for groups traditionally denied their rights, including people of color, women, and the LGBT communities. The ACLU of Wyoming carries out its work through selective litigation, lobbying at the state and local level, and through public education and awareness of what the Bill of Rights means for the people of Wyoming.