Date of Award
Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Psychology and University Honors
Noncitizen detention centers -- United States, Psychic trauma in children, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement -- Rules and practice, Refugee children -- Psychology
Many people are immigrating to the United States across the Southern border. While attempting to cross, they are often caught and detained by U.S. government officials where they are placed in detention centers around the country. The conditions in which immigrants are being held in Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) detention centers are cruel and lack basic human resources. Groups are separated, including parents from children, and often never reunited. Holding cells lack clean water, adequate food, beds, warmth, and privacy. There are numerous abuse allegations reporting misconduct towards adults and children. Many documented instances have shown medical malpractice, including unneeded sterilization. Children are forced to navigate this dangerous system without the support of their family or trusted adults. The conditions in which immigrants are being held are traumatic. This trauma can cause severe and lasting psychological and health effects, especially when not appropriately treated. This is especially damaging to children and their developing brains. What is occurring in these U.S. government centers is inhumane, unethical and abusive. There needs to be an entire immigration system overhaul, with a focus on improving conditions and streamlining the path of acceptance into the United Sates.
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DeWitt, Natalie A., "Trauma and Child Development: The Effects That Ice Detention Centers May Have On Our Children" (2021). University Honors Theses. Paper 1021.