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Southwest Workers’ Union in solidarity with the mothers at Karnes

April 6, 2015

Southwest Workers’ Union (SWU) stands in solidarity with the 78 mujeres, and mothers at Karnes County Residential Center in Texas; a facility privately run by GEO Group. On Monday, March 30th forty of the Mujeres began a hunger strike to protest their and their children unjust incarceration. The mujeres are asking U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), the GEO Group, and Karnes City for the immediate release from the facility. ICE refuses to understand distress, bigotry, fear, trauma and unjust praxis against immigrants, political refugees, and others who seek human rights, safety and asylum.

As a migrante community, it is our responsibility to support the mujeres who are committing their minds, and bodies for justice for their families in the borderland. The unfair actions partaken by ICE, GEO Group, and Karnes City are the perpetual behavior of anti-immigration, environmental racism, sexism, and classism from a capitalistic state. SWU focuses on community-based organizing, and fights for human rights to further environmental, and economic justice. Our framework examines struggles of race, gender, class and other intersectional narratives that primarily affect low income, people of color. We understand the longevity of the mujeres incarceration can be uncertain and unregulated in these detention facilities therefore we opposes the capitalist driven geopolitics on the borderlands which only goal is to dehumanize and criminalize our children and womyn.

Texas has a track record of exploitation, therefore women, like the environment, are seen as a form of profit. Karnes City, located on the Eagle Ford Shale, is one of the largest sites of Hydraulic Fracturing (fracking) in the US and home to many acts of environmental destruction. The proximity of the detention center to the extraction sites is a threat to the health of the incarcerated children along with their mothers. The cumulative effects of being exposed to contaminated air and water is known cause short and long term health problems such as respiratory issues, reproductive illness, and cancer. The compañeras refuse to consume the water provided by the center because of health concerns yet both ICE and GEO Group continue to deny the access to fresh, clean water. SWU views the denial of basic human necessities such as safe housing and fresh water and air as acts of violence against womyn and children.

ICE, GEO Group, and Karnes City are in violation of human rights to the undocumented compañeros and compañeras, and all immigrants. SWU stands in solidarity with those on the frontlines for social justice and movements aligned to fight for human, immigration, labor and environmental rights. We do not oversee the extensive retraining it would take to change this injustice, or other court decisions in which objectify immigrants from dignity. Therefore, we demand the liberation of the womyn and children in Karnes City; for ICE, GEO Group and other incarceration profiting entities to shut down; and we demand Karnes City assume accountability on issues of immigration and environmental racism. Adelante: La Lucha Continua!

Respeto, Justicia, y Dignidad,
– Southwest Workers’ Union
San Antonio, TX

‪#‎EndKarnes‬ ‪#‎EndFamilyDetention‬ ‪#‎not1more‬