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Attorneys Lack Access To Detained Immigrants

A U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) arrest.
Wikimedia Commons
Wikimedia Commons

Thousands of women and children from Central America are still waiting for decisions about whether they will be granted asylum in the United States. Many came here to escape rising violence in their home countries.

But until their court dates, they are being held at family detention centers along the Southwest border. Advocates and attorneys have reported prison-like conditions at these facilities with limited access to legal representation.

In November, we brought you the story of two North Carolina attorneys who traveled to the Artesia detention center in New Mexico. That facility has since been shut down, but many detainees were transferred to the Karnes County Residential Centerin rural Texas.

And attorneys from North Carolina and across the country are still traveling to these facilities, offering pro-bono services.

Host Frank Stasio talks with Heather Scavone, an immigration attorney and law professor at Elon University who led a group of students on a week-long visit to Karnes County Residential Center last month, and Amanda Sakuma, a national reporter for MSNBC.

Will Michaels is WUNC's Weekend Host and Reporter.
Longtime NPR correspondent Frank Stasio was named permanent host of The State of Things in June 2006. A native of Buffalo, Frank has been in radio since the age of 19. He began his public radio career at WOI in Ames, Iowa, where he was a magazine show anchor and the station's News Director.
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