Investigate Allegations of Forced Hysterectomies in Immigrant Detention Center

Target: Joseph Cuffari, Inspector General of the United States Department of Homeland Security

Goal: Demand investigation of reported unsanitary conditions, brutal treatment, and invasive surgeries performed without informed consent.

Detained immigrants at an Immigration and Customs Enforcement facility in Irwin, Georgia, have been subjected to dehumanizing medical treatments and dangerously unsanitary conditions, according to Dawn Wooten, a nurse who recently left employment at the facility. Wooten reported that facility staff ignored the most basic COVID-19 precautions, and routinely sent inmates who complained of the widespread lack of sanitization to solitary confinement.

Of particular concern are the large numbers of women reportedly given hysterectomies, an operation in which part or all of the uterus is removed. Per Wooten, many of the women involved spoke little to no English, indicating there was no possibility for them to give their informed consent to the operation since no interpreter was provided. Some of the women in question apparently underwent the procedure after reporting comparatively routine complaints, such as heavy menstrual flows or minor cysts.

As long as doubt remains over the truth of these allegations, the Department of Homeland Security has an urgent duty to resolve them to protect the health and safety of those in their charge. Sign the petition below to demand that these disturbing reports be investigated immediately.


Dear Mister Cuffari,

Credible reports have surfaced from the Irwin County Detention Center in Georgia alleging medical neglect, inhumane sanitation, and potentially criminal treatment of women who had no way of giving informed consent for invasive surgeries. Detainees are suspected to have been held at this facility without any regard for safety under the current pandemic, and those who speak up are believed to have been punished with solitary confinement.

The Department of Homeland Security is not above the law, and those detained in its facilities are still entitled to the same rights and protections guaranteed to anyone on U.S. soil or in medical facilities. I demand that you immediately open an investigation to determine the truth of any potential abuses.


[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: Pax Ahimsa Gethen

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