University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
Title "The Detainment of Families: Moral Implications Lacking in Legal Justifications"
Date 05/28/2016
Author Stephanie Costa
External Link
Abstract This paper contends that the three family detention facilities — South Texas Family Residential Center in Dilley, Texas, Karnes County Residential Center in Karnes City, Texas, and Berks County Family Residential Center in Leesport, Pennsylvania — are operating in violation of the Flores Settlement, the Fifth Amendment Due Process Clause, and the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). Subjecting the families to mandatory detention is at best a poor interpretation of section 235 of the INA. All three facilities are in violation of the Flores Settlement, as none of them are able to provide adequate healthcare and education in a non-restrictive environment. Additionally, none of the facilities are properly licensed, which is a violation of the Flores Settlement and of local administrative law. Finally, all three facilities make communication with attorneys cumbersome — a violation of the Flores Settlement and a Fifth Amendment Due Process Right violation. To detain families in a lawful manner would require drastic changes to the current system in place. Overall, there is likely not a lawful way to detain families. Thus, DHS should abandon the use of family detention in favor of alternatives to detention as use of alternatives to detention are better suited for enforcing U.S. immigration laws.
Source DePaul J. Soc. Just.
Citation 11 DePaul J. Soc. Just., 1-26

This Resource Relates To
case Flores v. Reno [later Meese, Johnson, Kelly, Sessions] (IM-CA-0002)

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