More than 2,000 migrants quarantined in US detention centers due to epidemics



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Christian Mejia thought he could escape his retention of immigrants in rural Louisiana after finding a lawyer to help him apply for asylum.

Then he was quarantined.

In early January, an outbreak of mumps at the Pine Prairie private treatment center ICE put Mejia and hundreds of other inmates under sequestration.

"When there is only one person who is sick, everyone pays," said Mejia, 19, in a telephone interview from the Pine Prairie Center, describing weeks without visits and without access. in the library and refectory.

Pine Prairie's ICE treatment center in Pine Prairie, Louisiana was the scene of a mumps outbreak in January, leaving inmates such as 19-year-old Christian Mejia in quarantine.

Pine Prairie's ICE treatment center in Pine Prairie, Louisiana was the scene of a mumps outbreak in January, leaving inmates such as 19-year-old Christian Mejia in quarantine.

Pine Prairie's ICE treatment center in Pine Prairie, Louisiana was the scene of a mumps outbreak in January, leaving inmates such as 19-year-old Christian Mejia in quarantine.

The management of outbreaks such as Pine Prairie is complicated by the fact that immigrant inmates are often transferred across the country and that infected people do not necessarily have the symptoms of viral diseases, even when they are contagious.

The management of outbreaks such as Pine Prairie is complicated by the fact that immigrant inmates are often transferred across the country and that infected people do not necessarily have the symptoms of viral diseases, even when they are contagious.

The management of outbreaks such as Pine Prairie is complicated by the fact that immigrant inmates are often transferred across the country and that infected people do not necessarily have the symptoms of viral diseases, even when they are contagious.

His lawyer was not allowed to enter, but his trial in the Immigration Court continued – by videoconference. On February 12, the judge ordered that Mejia be sent back to Honduras.

The number of people detained in the Trump administration's immigration center has reached record highs, raising concern among migrants' rights defenders about the epidemics and quarantines that limit access legal services.

As of March 6, more than 50,000 migrants were in detention, according to ICE data.

Internal e-mails reviewed by Reuters reveal the complications of managing outbreaks such as Pine Prairie, as immigrant inmates are often transferred across the country and infected people may not have symptoms of disease viral even when they are contagious.

CIE health officials were informed of 236 confirmed or probable cases of mumps among inmates at 51 facilities in the last 12 months, compared to no cases detected between January 2016 and February 2018.

The first cases in Pine Prairie were detected in January among four recent migrants from the Tallahatchie County Detention Center in Tutwiler, Mississippi.

The first cases in Pine Prairie were detected in January among four recent migrants from the Tallahatchie County Detention Center in Tutwiler, Mississippi.

The first cases in Pine Prairie were detected in January among four recent migrants from the Tallahatchie County Detention Center in Tutwiler, Mississippi.

Tallahatchie County Regional Correctional Facility in 2004. Tallahatchie, run by the private holding company CoreCivic, has had five confirmed cases of mumps and 18 cases of chicken pox since January.

Tallahatchie County Regional Correctional Facility in 2004. Tallahatchie, run by the private holding company CoreCivic, has had five confirmed cases of mumps and 18 cases of chicken pox since January.

Tallahatchie County Regional Correctional Facility in 2004. Tallahatchie, run by the private holding company CoreCivic, has had five confirmed cases of mumps and 18 cases of chicken pox since January.

Last year, it was determined that 423 inmates were infected with the flu and 461 with chicken pox. The three diseases are largely preventable by vaccination.

As of March 7, 2,287 prisoners had been quarantined all over the country, an ICE official told Reuters who asked for anonymity.

On Feb. 28, ten Democrat members of Congress sent a letter to ICE Acting Director Ronald Vitiello asking for more information about viral diseases in Colorado's immigration detention centers. Arizona and Texas. Legislators have not mentioned the Pine Prairie outbreak.

Pablo Paez, a spokesman for The GEO Group, the private penitentiary operator who runs Pine Prairie on contract with the government, said his health care professionals were meeting the standards set by the ICE and authorities health.

He added that the medical care provided to inmates allows the company to "detect, treat and follow appropriate medical protocols to manage an infectious outbreak".

On 21 July 2004, emergency and prison staff from Tallahatchie County went to the door. Tallahatchie is home to hundreds of recently apprehended migrants along the US-Mexico border.

On 21 July 2004, emergency and prison staff from Tallahatchie County went to the door. Tallahatchie is home to hundreds of recently arrested migrants along the US-Mexico border.

On 21 July 2004, emergency and prison staff from Tallahatchie County went to the door. Tallahatchie is home to hundreds of recently apprehended migrants along the US-Mexico border.

PRELIMINARY NUMBERS

The first cases in Pine Prairie were detected in January in four recent migrants transferred from the Tallahatchie County Detention Center in Mississippi, according to internal emails.

Tallahatchie, run by private holding company CoreCivic, has registered five confirmed cases of mumps and 18 cases of chicken pox since January, according to company spokeswoman Amanda Gilchrist.

She added that no one diagnosed with the diagnosis had been transferred out of the institution while the disease was active.

Tallahatchie is home to hundreds of recently apprehended migrants along the US-Mexico border, said officials at the ICE.

Members of a caravan of migrants leaving El Salvador to travel to the United States are waiting to board a bus in San Salvador, El Salvador, February 28, 2019.

Members of a caravan of migrants leaving El Salvador to travel to the United States are waiting to board a bus in San Salvador, El Salvador, February 28, 2019.

Members of a caravan of migrants leaving El Salvador to travel to the United States are waiting to board a bus in San Salvador, El Salvador, February 28, 2019.

People in a caravan of migrants leaving El Salvador for the United States are interviewed by a police officer at a bus terminal in San Salvador, El Salvador.

People in a caravan of migrants leaving El Salvador for the United States are interviewed by a police officer at a bus terminal in San Salvador, El Salvador.

People in a caravan of migrants leaving El Salvador for the United States are interviewed by a police officer at a bus terminal in San Salvador, El Salvador.

Tuesday, the Commissioner of Customs and Border Protection, Kevin McAleenan, told reporters that the changing demographics on the southwest border, with the increase in the number of immigrants in from Central America traveling long distances, overwhelmed border officers and raising health issues.

"We are seeing migrants arrive with diseases and medical problems in unprecedented numbers," McAleenan said at a press conference.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, vaccination rates in El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras exceed 90%.

Inmates of the CIE come from countries around the world, with vaccination coverage more or less wide.

Central American migrants heading to the United States with a second caravan arrive in Ciudad Hidalgo after crossing the border with Guatemala in southern Mexico on 17 January 2019

Central American migrants heading to the United States with a second caravan arrive in Ciudad Hidalgo after crossing the border with Guatemala in southern Mexico on 17 January 2019

Central American migrants heading to the United States with a second caravan arrive in Ciudad Hidalgo after crossing the border with Guatemala in southern Mexico on 17 January 2019

HIGH PROFILE REMOVAL

In Pine Prairie, staff members sometimes disagreed with the manager on how to handle the mumps outbreak, show internal emails.

The guardian decided not to quarantine 40 new arrivals from Tallahatchie in February, despite concerns expressed by medical staff, according to an email.

The director, Indalecio Ramos, who relayed the epidemic-related issues to ICE and The GEO Group, argued that quarantining the transfers would prevent them from attending their hearings, the journalist said. Health center administrator in an email dated February 7.

In an email dated February 21, ICE asked Pine Prairie medical staff to release a quarantined inmate due to chickenpox and mumps for his trip, calling it "a high-profile referral for deportation." ".

Central American migrants heading for the United States arrive in southern Mexico on January 17, 2019. Immunization rates in El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras are greater than 90 %, according to the CDC

Central American migrants heading for the United States arrive in southern Mexico on January 17, 2019. Immunization rates in El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras are greater than 90 %, according to the CDC

Central American migrants heading for the United States arrive in southern Mexico on January 17, 2019. Immunization rates in El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras are greater than 90 %, according to the CDC

In an email to staff later in the day, Warden Ramos wrote that the medical staff wanted to exclude the inmate from the transfer, but that "ICE still wanted him to leave the country … Make sure that he leaves.

The spokesman of the CIE said that travel is limited for people deemed contagious, but that people exposed to asymptomatic diseases can travel.

Since January, Pine Prairie's 1,094-bed center has 18 inmates with confirmed or probable cases of mumps, compared to none in 2018, according to ICE.

By mid-February, 288 people were quarantined in Pine Prairie. Mejia said her 40s ended on 25 February.

Detention centers in other states have also seen an increase in epidemics.

People walk in a caravan of migrants departing from El Salvador en route to the United States, in San Salvador, El Salvador

People walk in a caravan of migrants departing from El Salvador en route to the United States, in San Salvador, El Salvador

People walk in a caravan of migrants departing from El Salvador en route to the United States, in San Salvador, El Salvador

Migrants leaving El Salvador to travel to the United States. According to a statement by Customs and Border Protection Commissioner Kevin McAleenan, sick migrants would arrive at the border in "unprecedented" numbers.

Migrants leaving El Salvador to travel to the United States. According to a statement by Customs and Border Protection Commissioner Kevin McAleenan, sick migrants would arrive at the border in "unprecedented" numbers.

Migrants leaving El Salvador to travel to the United States. According to a statement by Customs and Border Protection Commissioner Kevin McAleenan, sick migrants would arrive at the border in "unprecedented" numbers.

There have been 186 cases of mumps in immigration detention centers in Texas since October, the biggest epidemic that has occurred in these centers in recent years, said Lara Anton, health services press officer. from the State Department of Texas.

In Colorado, at the Denver-operated Detroit Detention Center, managed by the GEO group, 357 people have been quarantined following eight confirmed cases and five suspected mumps cases since February, as well as six cases of chickenpox diagnosed since early January. said Dr. Bernadette Albanese of the Tri County Health Department in Colorado.

Civil rights lawyer Danielle Jefferis said court hearings for immigrants quarantined in Aurora were largely canceled.

On February 12, in Pine Prairie, Mejia said she felt confused and hopeless during her video hearing, with no lawyer at her side.

After Mejia's lawyers complained, the lawyers were allowed to visit the quarantined detainees on February 13 – a day too late for Mejia.

While appealing his case, his lawyers say that he could be deported at any time.

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