ICE

Inside Richmond's Immigration Detention Center

Mar 5, 2015
Photo by Stephen Southern.

Every month Alex Aldana stands in protest in front of the West County Detention Facility in Richmond. It’s a medium-security jail that holds men and women arrested for or convicted of crimes -- as well as undocumented immigrants. On the first Saturday of December, Aldana tells his story to about a hundred supporters, who are holding posters, noisemakers, and musical instruments.

From our partners at Youth Radio.

  

The issue of prison rape is often belittled by standup comedians, but it’s really no laughing matter – especially if you’re a transgender woman locked up in an all-male facility.

Grace Lawrence, 43, is a transgender woman from Liberia who was in the custody of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or ICE, for nearly three years. For all but six months, she was kept in solitary confinement for 23 hours a day.

Often, transgender inmates are placed in protective custody – also known as solitary confinement – for their own protection.