Friends of Miami-Dade Detainees is a non-profit organization that runs a visitation program at the Krome Service and Processing Center in Miami, Florida. FOMDD is run entirely by community volunteers and advocates. Over the last 5 years, they have made over 2,000 visits offering people in immigration detention a connection to the community. Their consistent presence in the facility provides a measure of community oversight to ensure that people are treated properly. Just the fact that someone on the outside cares can be a source of consolation for people detained.
Services provided to those in detention include money for phone calls or commissary items, books or magazines, help in connecting with friends or family, providing clothes for release ore deportation, and at times free legal consultations. Their goal is to end isolation, curb abuse, and expose our country’s unnecessarily punitive response to migration.
For over a year now, FOMDD along with various partners have been showing up outside of the ICE facility in Miramar, Florida. The mission here is to bear witness of the silent raids and family separation happening when individuals go to their scheduled immigration check-in. When this effort first started the conditions they encountered were horrific and inhumane. The lines would wrap around the blocks, made to wait standing in the Miami heat or rain for hours. Every appointment was scheduled for the same time and there was no access to bathrooms, water, parking or food. Many families with small children struggled, while others watched as their cars were towed, and still other families waited hours on end to realize that their love one was not going to come back out. With the weekly presence and pressure of the Circle of Protection, many of the immediate issues have been alleviated, but families are still being separated, people are still being abducted, and ICE is still terrorizing our communities.
Friends of Miami-Dade Detainee’s Mission:
- End Isolation
- Be the Eyes and Ears of the Community
- Spread Awareness
- End Immigrant Detention