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Biden’s Achilles’ Heel? Key Group Braces for Potential Disaster

via NBC News
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Labor unions are opposing President Biden’s potential closure of the Adelanto ICE Processing Center in California, which is operated by the private GEO Group.

The facility, which can house nearly 2,000 immigrants, has remained largely empty due to a COVID-19 outbreak.

Unions are urging the president and lawmakers not to close the center, emphasizing the specialized care provided to the immigrant population.

They argue that closing the facility would jeopardize jobs and contradict the administration’s call for additional detention beds.

The unions are seeking to lift the Department of Justice’s restrictions and extend the facility’s contract.

“Many of us see our work as much more than providing healthcare. It is a way to serve the greater good. Those of us who have chosen this profession did not do so with the intent of becoming wealthy. We chose this craft with the intent to provide care for a special population of people. This is not only the desire, but the passion that drives those of us in the medical profession to do what we do,” members wrote.

“In closing, we ask that you have the Department of Justice (DOJ) lift the court order that prevents intake and keep the Adelanto ICE Processing Center open. This will allow us to continue being the front line for public health and trauma-informed care. It is our obligation to provide this service, not just to the community of Adelanto, but also to our great nation.”

“The hardworking, professional nursing staff at Adelanto represented by Teamsters Local 1932 are committed to providing quality and humane treatment at the Processing Center, but we are deeply concerned that a failure by the courts or Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to take commonsense action put these members jobs needlessly at risk,” Teamsters Union General President Sean O’Brien wrote.

“While we are aware of the recent comments from ICE that it is reviewing the situation at Adelanto and that no final decision is made, we call on the Administration and ICE to protect our members’ jobs, and ensure that the facility remains open. To that end, it is also incumbent on the Department of Justice to take an active role in ensuring that the court orders which have prevented Adelanto from operating as intended are lifted.”

“This Administration considering the closure of the Adelanto ICE Processing Center at a time when capacity is so desperately needed in this area is genuinely perplexing and seemingly counter-intuitive. In its October 20, 2023, supplemental request, your Administration called for funding 12,500 beds,” NFFE National President Randy Erwin said.

“It is wholly inconsistent with the supplemental request to ask for more funding for detention beds when Adelanto is already paid for under existing appropriations, and intake could begin quite quickly if doing so was prioritized by this Administration.”

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