#Not1More Deportation

Detention Center Hunger Strike News


Northwest Detention Center in Tacoma, WA

On Friday, March 7th, 1200 people held at the Northwest Detention Center in Tacoma, Washington, one of the largest immigration prisons in the country, began a hunger strike and work stoppage.


ICE immediately retaliated against the strikers, placing many in solitary confinement and threatening others with force feeding. A core group continued for more than two weeks and the strike restarted on a mass scale to continue pushing demands.  Their effort to win fair treatment and see the President stop deportations has garnered national and international support as they blow the whistle on conditions in the center run for-profit by the GEO Group.

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Joe Crowley Detention Center in Conroe, TX

Two weeks later, Detainees in the Joe Crowley Detention Center in Conroe, TX were inspired to start their own hunger strike. 500 people initially went on hunger strike to protest conditions at the privately-run detention center in which they are housed and to demand an end to deportations and family separation.


The hunger strikers have faced significant retaliation.  ICE has pressured 20 of the strikers to sign voluntary departure orders, and 15 have already been deported as a direct result of participating in the hunger strike. Hunger strikers are being put in isolation and denied visits from their families as a result of participating, and at least 2 are currently vomiting blood and facing life-threatening kidney problems as a result of not eating.

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Wife of Detained Hunger Strike Leader Begins Week Long Hunger Strike to Reunite Her Family

TACOMA, WA –  September 2, 2014. Watch as Wife of Immigration Prison Hunger Strike Leader Goes Read more

Houston Mother and 13-Year-Old Daughter Support Federal Legislation Addressing Demands of Hunger Strikers, Urge Families to Join in Larger Effort to Stop Deportations

What: Press Conference Supporting Federal Legislation to Address Hunger Striker Demands Where: Mickey Leland Federal Building, 1919 Smith Street, Houston, TX, 77002 When: 4:00pm, Tuesday, May 13, 2014 Who: Ernestina Hernandez, Melanny Martinez, Alianza Mexicana and supporters Manuel Martinez' family continues their fight to bring him back after he was forcefully deported for participating in a hunger strike at Joe Corley Detention Facility. Since his deportation, Manuel's wife and daughter have testified in Congressional briefings and participated in White House protests in Washington DC. They are holding ICE accountable for the abuse against Manuel and his fellow detained immigrants during the hunger strike, including verbal and physical violence, prolonged solitary confinement, and forced deportations. Read more

Undocumented Leaders of NWDC Resistance Meet with Members of House Judiciary Committee and Homeland Security Officials in DC; Lawsuit Withdrawn; Organizing Continues

Tacoma, WA - Last Thursday two undocumented leaders of the Northwest Detention Center Resistance met with four members of the House Judiciary Committee. The Congresspeople, all co-sponsors of the Accountability in Immigration Detention Act, were Suzan DelBene (D-WA), Zoe Lofgren (D-CA), Ted Deutch (D-FL) and Joe Garcia (D-FL). The two leaders from NWDC Resistance were Jose Moreno, who helped organize the March 7 hunger strike inside the Northwest Detention Center and supported from the outside once he was released on bond, and Maru Mora Villalpando, who was a leader of the Feb. 24th action that delayed deportations for a week and led support for the hunger strike. “The fact that we were able to met with key Congressmembers means we undocumented immigrants are not longer being ignored. Our activism is paying off”, said Maru Mora Villalpando in reference to the meeting. Read more

Accountability in Immigration Detention Act Introduced; Strike Leader Ramon Mendoza Hearing Continued; Counties Opting Out of Immigration Holds; Repercussions of the last 74 days continue

Tacoma, WA - Yesterday Congressman Adam Smith introduced legislation to address many of the demands of the hunger strikers at the Northwest Detention Center. Congressman Smith indicated that his legislation is in direct response to the hunger strike. On March 20th he visited NWDC and spoke with Ramon Mendoza Pascual, Miguel Angel Farias and Jesus Gaspar Navarro. Reaction from Ramon Mendoza Pascual’s family was positive. His wife, Veronica Noriega, said, “I¹m glad that their courage and their effort paid off, I want to thank Rep Adam Smith for his interest in solving the issue of the suffering of so many people.” His 11-year-old daughter, Veronica Mendoza, said, “I’m proud of my dad.” The legislation would, in the Congressman’s words, “change federal law to ensure that detention center standards are federally regulated and created by a rulemaking committee that includes stakeholders like organizations that advocate for undocumented immigrants, local governments, medical experts, and more.” It would also encourage alternatives to detention. The Not1More Washington campaign expressed its appreciation, “Today he delivered on his promise. As part of the campaign to stop deportations and as representatives of those on hunger strike, we thank him for his leadership and courage in creating solutions to these issues.” Read more

After 56 Days, Northwest Detention Center Hunger Strike Concludes; Newly Formed Collective of Detainees Releases Statement

Tacoma, WA - The wave of hunger strikes that first began on March 7th at the Northwest Detention Center (NWDC), a federal facility owned by the GEO Group and under the authority of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), has concluded. In a communication dated May 1st, the newly formed “Collective of NWDC-T Detainees,” informed their supporters that they have completed this stage of their struggle. Full text of statement, with Spanish-language original, is below; pdf of original available upon request. The letter, titled, “Assessment of one phase of struggle” documents the retaliation suffered by the peaceful whistle-blowing hunger strikers during the March 27th wave of the strike. Describing “rigged hearings under false accusations with no respect for due process” and “sentences of 2 to 30 days” of solitary confinement suffered by the hunger strikers, the Collective also affirms their commitment to their initial demands, including a call for an end to deportations and for bold action by President Obama. Read more

May 1st Solidarity Rally at Northwest Detention Center Greets Arriving Detainees and Hears from Hunger Strikers, Families and Detainee Living with HIV and Cancer

Tacoma, WA — May Day, a worker’s holiday that in recent years has focused on Read more

May 1st Solidarity Rally at Northwest Detention Center to Highlight On-Going Struggle; Two Hunger Strikers Transferred to Out-of-state Facility in Retaliation for Peaceful Protest

Tacoma, WA — This Thursday, from 12 – 1 p.m., a crowd will rally outside the Northwest Read more

Hunger Strikers Released From Solitary Confinement; Fast continuing through May 1st to highlight on-going detention center abuses.

Tacoma, WA  – As a result of the widespread attention to their cause, hunger strikers Read more

For previous alerts and advisories related to hunger strikes in Tacoma and Texas, click here