CREEC believes that immigration detention – in which people alleged to have violated civil statutes are confined in prison-like settings – is inherently constitutionally suspect and inappropriate for the vast majority of non-citizens awaiting resolution of their immigration status. However, while detention is sanctioned by the courts and Congress, CREEC’s Immigration Detention Accountability Project (IDAP) will fight to ensure that people held in ICE custody are held in constitutionally adequate conditions, receive constitutionally adequate care, and are not discriminated against because on the basis of disability. We will undertake this work at the individual, facility-specific, and system-wide level, in the form of direct representation, class action litigation, and serving as resources and educators for the disability rights and immigration communities.
IDAP focuses on three major areas:
- Impact litigation challenging the conditions of confinement in immigration detention centers;
- Impact litigation challenging discrimination against detained immigrants with disabilities; and
- Education and outreach on detention conditions and treatment of immigrants with disabilities.
IDAP also provides pro bono direct representation of detained immigrants in support of these goals.
About the IDAP Director
Liz Jordan joined CREEC as our first CREEC Fellow in June, 2017, proposing a project to challenge conditions in immigration detention facilities. Since that time, Liz and other CREEC lawyers and paralegals:
- have partnered with major national civil rights and immigration nonprofits in filing a class action against President Trump and Attorney General Sessions challenging conditions of detained immigrants at Victorville federal medium security prison;
- are currently working on several other impact cases;
- have represented several individual detained immigrants;
- have spoken widely on each of these topics; and
- have prepared and circulated educational materials on the rights of detained immigrants with disabilities.
Liz graduated summa cum laude from NYU School of Law in 2013. After law school, she worked first as a Fellow with the Capital Appeals Project in Louisiana, where she represented capital defendants on appeal. She then represented immigrant children facing deportation in New York with The Door’s Legal Services Center. Prior to law school, Liz spent a year as a Fulbright Scholar in Spain studying human rights issues and several years as an international human rights advocate in New York. She received her B.A. from Yale College in 2006. She is admitted to practice in Louisiana and New York.
- In February, 2018, CREEC filed a FOIA lawsuit seeking the disclosure of documentation of detainee deaths, alleged abuse and other substandard conditions of confinement at the Adelanto and Etowah immigration detention facilities. CREEC is represented pro bono by Thomas B. Kelley and Amber R. Gonzales of Ballard Spahr LLP. Click here to read the full FOIA case page.
- In March, 2018, CREEC, along with the Southern Poverty Law Center, sent a letter to the Etowah County Commission and Etowah County Sheriff, urging officials to include outdoor recreation for immigration detainees in renovation plans for the Etowah County Detention Center (ECDC).
- In August, 2018, CREEC, along with The American Civil Liberties Union, and Prison Law Office, filed a class action lawsuit against President Trump and Immigration and Customs Enforcement for violating the constitutional rights of immigrants detained at FCI Victorville, a federal prison in Victorville, California. Click here to read the full Victorville case page.
- In August, 2019, CREEC, along with Southern Poverty Law Center, Disability Rights Advocates, and Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP, filed a nationwide class action lawsuit against Immigration and Customs Enforcement and the Department of Homeland Security regarding the treatment of disabled immigration detainees. Click here to read the Fraihat v. ICE case page.
To get in contact with the IDAP team please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Conferences & Talks
- IDAP Director Liz participated in the Detention Watch Network’s 12th National Member Conference in May 2018
- Liz spoke to law students at Sturm College of Law at the University of Denver at the “Colorado Challenges Immigration Detention” part of the DU Crimmigration Law & Policy Event Series.
- Liz spoke at the Fraihat v. ICE Press Conference on August 19, 2019, demanding accountability from ICE for the treatment of detainees.