Editor’s Note: The below statement was made by the DC Abortion Fund Board of Directors in response to reports of forced and coerced hysterectomies of detainees at Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) detention centers in Georgia.
This past week, we, like many of you, read the horrifying reports of forced and coerced hysterectomies of detainees at ICE detention centers in Georgia. The DC Abortion Fund stands in solidarity with the survivors of this appalling injustice.
We also know that the stories we have heard are not isolated incidents, and we honor the legacies and stand with the many Black, brown, and Indigenous people who have suffered and continue to be harmed by the long history of state-sanctioned violence, forced sterilization, and attacks on bodily autonomy in this country. We know that these incidents in Georgia are not isolated, but a part of an insidious and sickening pattern of violence and neglect at the hands of ICE and the US government within our borders and abroad. ICE is a rogue agency with a track record of violence, negligence, and the destruction of communities and families, and it must be abolished. For too long, we have been hearing accounts of abuse and medical neglect within the agency, and this reckoning is long overdue.
We also stand with and owe a great deal of gratitude to nurse Dawn Wooten, the brave Black woman who risked it all and spoke out about these injustices, and to the many immigrants who have been and are continuing to share their stories in Georgia and beyond.
We are sickened and outraged at the blatant disregard for human rights demonstrated by this inhumane treatment and the other unacceptable health conditions of LaSalle Corrections facilities and other detention centers, jails, and prisons. As an abortion fund, we fight for the values of reproductive justice where all people have bodily autonomy and access to care for themselves and their families. We stand with our community to fight for immigrant justice and racial justice as we condemn the existence of ICE, the violence it inflicts, and the legacy of white supremacy that it upholds.
We encourage you as a member of the DC Abortion Fund community to learn from and donate to the folks in Georgia and beyond who have been sounding the alarm on these grave injustices for years. We will continue to update this list as we have more information. In addition to our partners in abortion funding at ARC-SE, we encourage you to explore Project South, Georgia Detention Watch, Georgia Latino Alliance for Human Rights, South Georgia Immigrant Support Network, Families Belong Together, UndocuBlack, and the Black Alliance for Just Immigration.