The following information was posted on my site as a comment earlier today. Due to its importance and pertinence to posts I’d put up here last year about the T. Don Hutto Detention Center in Texas and the Yourdkhani family, I am putting it up here as a separate post:
Immigration Reform Effort
Judge Order CCA Files Open
Immigration Reform Effort (IRE) notes, with interest, the July, 2008, ruling by a Tennessee Chancery Court requiring CCA to “follow the state’s public records laws and open their files for public viewing.”
IRE favors public disclosure of information relating to the public interest, including the administration and operation of private, for-profit prisons and detention centers on the behalf of our government.
It is in the interest of such public disclosure that IRE is sponsoring a public forum on the T Don Hutto facility, September 24, in Georgetown, Texas. Invited panelists include:
Barbara Hines, clinical professor of law and director of the Immigration Clinic at The University of Texas School of Law; co-counsel in the lawsuits challenging conditions at T. Don Hutto.
Wayne Krause, Legal Director, Austin office for the Texas Civil Rights Project.
Bob Libal, Texas Coordinator, Grassroots Leadership: Grassroots Leadership works to abolish for-profit private prisons.
Jose Orta, President, LULAC Council 4721, and longtime Taylor resident and critic of T D Hutto.
John Carter, United States Congress, 31st District of Texas, in which T Don Hutto is located.
Dan A Gattis, County Judge, Williamson County Commissioners Court, Texas; serves as chief administrator for T Don Hutto pass-through contract with CCA.
Julie Meyers, Homeland Security Assistant Secretary for Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).
John Ferguson, Chairman and CEO of Corrections Corporation of America (CCA) which owns, and has contract with ICE to operate, T Don Hutto.
Doug Smith, Georgetown community leader and former Mayor Pro-Tem, will serve as moderator.
To date, all the invited panelists who have expressed concern about various issues relating to the T Don Hutto facility (Hines, Krause, Libal, and Orta) have confirmed their participation. Those invitees who have been supporters and promoters of the facility (Carter, Gattis, Meyers, Ferguson) have not responded to the invitation, at this time.
IRE member, Dr. Terri Hall, appeared before the WCCC on Tuesday, 7/29, extending a personal invitation to the entire commissioners court to attend, reminding Judge Gattis of his invitation to participate.
IRE believes that this issue is one that, in a free society, must be publicly examined in an objective and dignified manner; it is for that reason that we have undertaken this project. Those who have approved, supported, and profited from T Don Hutto have a special responsibility to participate, and an opportunity to justify the public trust for their role.
For more information, please contact MaryEllen Kersch, 512-863-7174, mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org