Two weeks ago, I spent my first day inside a detention center. As a long-time volunteer with the Innovation Law Lab, I heard many stories from detention, shared by immigrants and advocates alike. But to finally be in a detention center and meet the individuals held there has given me a new sense of scope.
It may sound apparent, but every person inside Sheridan has a story, a family, a home. Each of them made the decision to leave their homes and families and travel thousands of miles to a new place in search of safety, for themselves and, for many, their families. Each of them is scared and confused as to why after coming all this way, they are here, in a federal prison in Sheridan, Oregon.
On the other side of the prison wall is a community that wants to help. This week we were able to utilize over 25 on-the-ground volunteers and complete “Know Your Rights” presentations for all previously-unrepresented immigrants at Sheridan!
During what has been an incredibly challenging time, we have been kept afloat by the brave individuals in Sheridan and our remarkable supporters. For all of you, I am grateful and truly humbled by the depth of your compassion in the face of very dark circumstances.
Program Manager, Sheridan Pro Bono Project
Innovation Law Lab