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A letter from Angie, 15

“There are many things that happen in this place called Karnes County Residential Center. There are many good and bad things in this place.


Many people call it a detention center for immigrants, but we call it a jail.


There are some workers at this detentions center who think poorly of immigrants. We are also human beings, just as they are, and we have feelings.


Sometimes they speak very badly to us, I don’t like to see how they treat mothers and children. Some workers insult us just for asking a question, or if ask for something, they refuse, or there are some who are angry about something that happened to them, and they take it out on you.


I have observed that when the mothers and children are lining up for lunch, they look for shade; then a supervisor from this detention center arrives and moves them out of the shade and into the sun. And there are mothers who are carrying their babies, and they have to bear the heat of the sun so they can go in and eat.


There is a mom who has psychological problems. She hits her head against the wall, and when she’s feeling bad, what they do is they take her to the doctor and lock her up.


There are many mothers and children who have been in this detention center for three months, and they still don’t know anything about their cases. They are paying more attention to the people who just got to this center that they are to the people who have already been here three months. It isn’t fair that they treat them as inferior.


There are also mothers who are afraid of one of the ladies who works at this detention center, because she is really angry, and if the mothers ask her for something, she speaks to them harshly and an in a very vulgar way.


To entertain ourselves and forget what is going on around us, we young people play soccer or basketball, and what they do is take away our balls, or lock us up in our rooms.


But just as there are bad people, there are good people. One or another of them is really nice and speaks very nicely to you.


They talk to you to find out how you feel, and they give good advice, and sometimes they make you feel really good. And they lift our spirits.


There are some who are very good, and when you ask them for something, they bring it in a friendly way. They play with the children and speak really nicely to them.


Not everyone is the same, most are good, but most of the rest are bad, they are racists, and they look down on the immigrants. What I would like them to know is that we are good people, and we have hearts and feelings.”


Angie Moncado

8 Nov 2014

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