SODOM & GOMORRAH: The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) fought the federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and won, supposedly. The ACLU claimed that police forces were wrongfully detaining citizens who get caught up in deportation dragnets. The feds have now set up a hotline that people can call, but this won’t help for three reasons.
First, an arrested person isn’t likely to have access to the number when they’re in jail. If the jails are so overcrowded and underfunded that this man couldn’t even get a bed for four days, then I doubt they’ll have the resources or motivation to post the telephone number everywhere.
Second, as alluded to, the jails are overcrowded. Jail overcrowding means that it takes longer for inmates to reach and use telephones.
Third, if someone is held on an immigration hold, it’s possible that they’ll be transported to a federal facility. During the transit process, a person’s access to telephones is severely diminished and if a person feels unsafe and goes into protective custody, they generally only have access to phones for 15 minutes every 30 days (most American State and Federal prisons seem to list this on their sites). Since the hotline presumably goes to a person and not a lawyer, the person probably wouldn’t get a longer call.
This is simply politics as usual.