Closing Hutto Prison for Children Requires Three Votes

TOMORROW, Tuesday morning, December 23, when most folks will be focused on the holidays, the Williamson County Commissioners Court will vote to extend their contracts for Hutto with ICE and CCA. Is there anything YOU or your organization can do write, call, fax and/or e-mail to stop such a decision that will only prolong the imprisonment and abuse of these innocent children?

Is there any kind of mobilization at the Williamson Country Commissioners Court tomorrow that you could help with today? Below is a statement regarding the extension of Hutto…along with contact information. From Washington, D.C. to Washington State…please consider letting your voices heard. — Jay J. Johnson Castro, Sr.

By Mary Ellen Kersch

WCCC Judge Gattis quoted in AAS re. TD Hutto vote: “Unless something jumps up and bites me, I will vote to renew”

Bite him. Before Tuesday’s vote!

Contact WCCC members and tell them to vote NO Hutto Renewal(See contact info below)

Putting non-criminal families, including little children, in prison for infractions comparable to running a stop sign is immoral and un-American.

Imprisoning people charged with no crime, while they await decision re. applications for citizenship and asylum, is NOT effective immigration policy, does NOT secure our borders, and has NOTHING to do with patriotism. It is a corrupt means to enrich an already wealthy corporation by exploiting the weakest among us!

As partners in the contract for the most expensive method to effectively assure that non-criminal immigrants appear at their hearings, the Williamson County Commissioners Court (WCCC) exhibits a disregard for fiscal responsibility with taxpayer dollars during a national economic crisis.

This prison is exempt from any governmental regulation and has no government oversight—and a continuing record of abuses. With the lapse of the only outside (court-ordered) oversight of this facility in August of 2009 those risks are greatly elevated in renewal. (Article in March 2008 NewYorker provides a good chronicle)

Partnering with Corrections Corporation of American, with its less-than-admirable record of management, is a bad business practice, and exposes Williamson County taxpayers to financial risks from poor management, bad employees, and external lawsuits—all of which are beyond their capacity to control. (See attached “Letter to WCCC re CCA Business Practices.)

Williamson County’s reputation has been damaged as a result of a number of specific offenses relating to the operation of the facility, as well as its very existence. Contract renewal would affirm WCCC’s approval of the disgraces of T Don Hutto and further damage our image locally, nationally, and internationally

Evidence presented at the September public forum (which WCCC boycotted) stated that T Don Hutto’s operation is probably a deterrent to future, clean, economic development in the area; renewal would send a very bad signal for the future of such growth; it is actually anti-economic development!

This proposal fails the simple “risk vs. benefits” of any business undertaking. The less than $16,000 monthly maximum that Williamson County collects under this contract cannot be reasonably argued to compensate for the negatives that exist.

WCCC has had a very rough record re. contracts to date; re-entering this partnership does nothing to convince citizens that WCCC has been learned anything from those previous costly contract mistakes.

Please Contact:
Judge Dan Gattis: ctyjudge@wilco.org(512) 943-1550
Commissioner Lisa Birkman: lbirkman@wilco.org ( 512) 733-5380
Commissioner Cynthia Long: clong@wilco.org(512) 260-4280)
Commissioner Valerie Covey: vcovey@wilco.org (512) 943-3370
Commissioner Ron Morrison: rmorrison@wilco.org (512) 846-1190

Phone, email, by end of business Monday and tell them NO to Hutto! And broadcast this plea on behalf of good government and the babies in jail.

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