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  • Writer's pictureEMAC

Californians Sue the CA Prison System for Illegal Discrimination

NEW: Californians Sue the CA Prison System for Illegal Discriminating Against People Suspected of Being Born Outside the US

A new lawsuit led by incarcerated and formerly incarcerated California details how CDCR unlawfully discriminates against hundreds of people each year in their wholly voluntary efforts to assist ICE. CDCR refers people in its custody to ICE for detention and deportation after they have served their time in prison, contributing to a dual system of justice that targets immigrants, refugees, and anyone CDCR officers unilaterally - and often incorrectly - assume was born outside the U.S. In violation of Californians’ civil rights, CDCR at times makes these decisions using nothing more than their perception of an incarcerated person’s place of birth, race, ethnicity, or how well they speak English.

This policy also excludes people if they are perceived to be foreign-born from rehabilitative programs, alternative-to-custody programs, lower-security housing placements, educational & vocational programs that help them transition back to their communities.

When Choy Pangthong entered CDCR custody, CDCR notified ICE, even though Pangthong had become a US citizen the previous year. “For nearly two decades, I lived with the fear and trauma caused by CDCR’s discriminatory ICE notification policy based on where I was born."

WATCH: Click here

Through its unlawful discrimination and targeting of immigrants and refugees, CDCR is undermining Californian values of equality and justice. As the CA legislature works towards passing the #HOMEAct so that more Californians can return home to their families, we’re calling on Gov. Newsom to protect Californians and halt CDCR’s cooperation with ICE today.


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