A mother described to NowThis her life in a U.S. detention center.
“I came in 2014 from El Salvador, fleeing from persecution from gangs after a homicide attack,” she explained. “In 2005, the gang MS-13 killed my father. There were constant threats, family crises that came about. When we crossed the border, we were sent to the ‘icebox.’”
“Hielara” or “icebox” is a term used to describe the detention center’s frigid holding cells. Before Trump’s family separation policy, parents were held with their children. After the women’s sister was separated from her and sent to Chicago, she went to Artesia in New Mexico to start her process of deportation and application for asylum. She described some of the terrible conditions detainees faced — they were given expired, inadequate amounts of food and received little to no medical attention.
“In reality, they don’t know what is happening in these centers, because they’ve never been there,” she said. “I think that as a father, as a grandfather, as an uncle, or as anyone with feelings, he wouldn’t put up with a child of his being treated like a dog when he goes to eat. He wouldn’t put up with the lack of medical attention. He wouldn’t put up with seeing his children grow up with trauma that is causing.”