The UUCPA Action Council has voted to sign a letter to Senator Alex Padilla in response to a request from our Justice Partner, Interfaith Movement for Human Integrity. Senator Padilla is Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on Immigration, Citizenship, and Border Safety. The letter requests that Senator Padilla submit a congressional inquiry to U.S. Immigration & Customs Enforcement (“ICE”) requesting the release of Ligaya Jensen and Jacqueline Vanboozyen, the last two women in ICE custody at Adelanto Detention Facility (“Adelanto”) in Adelanto, California. Both women have endured prolonged and indefinite detention. Besides release of Ms. Jensen and Vanboozyen on humanitarian parole, the inquiry is intended to raise awareness of the serious injustice and inhumanity that ICE continues to inflict upon them.
Ms. Jensen, age 46, has been detained by ICE at Adelanto since December 2018 – for over four years. She came to the United States from the Philippines over 25 years ago and is the mother of two U.S. citizens, Christian and Alexander. She has close family members in several parts of California, including Stockton and San Diego. During her years detained at Adelanto, she has developed serious medical conditions including potentially cancerous tumors.
Ms. Vanboozyen, age 57, has been detained by ICE at Adelanto since September 2019 – for over three years. She came to the United States from Germany over 50 years ago, when she was two years old, and is the mother of three U.S. citizens: Andrew, Victoria, and Hillary. She is also a grandmother. During her years detained at Adelanto, she has developed serious medical conditions including diabetes and major depression.
The letter speaks of the immense physical and mental harm inflicted on those held in ICE detention. Adelanto in particular is notorious for being one of the deadliest ICE detention facilities in the country. The letter has already been signed by numerous organizations and individuals.