Residents of the town of Southwest Ranches and the cities of Pembroke Pines and Weston who oppose a federally funded and privately managed immigration detention center in their area will attend a town meeting tonight to call for the resignation of the mayor and town attorney of Southwest Ranches.

The Corrections Corporation of America (commonly known as CCA), the largest private immigration detention contractor in the country, is partnering with Southwest Ranches. According to Detention Watch Network, CCA “operates a total of 14 [Immigration and Customs Enforcement]-contracted facilities with a total of 14,556 beds. In 2009, CCA averaged a daily population of 6,199 detained immigrants.”

In a press release issued today, residents

who oppose the ICE Immigrant Prison in Southwest Ranches are attending tonight’s Town Council Meeting at 7pm. We are sick of the lack of transparency, stonewalling, and ramrodding occurring at Town Hall. We call on Mayor Jeff Nelson to STEP Down and the Town Attorney Keith Poliakoff to resign as well. We believe they have been complicit in a web of deception and smoke-filled room back door deals all the while imposing a “cone of silence” on the residents. We are disgusted with the current administration of the town and want to see a regime change. How can we continue to trust these people with guiding our Town and to be a beacon to protect our rural lifestyle when they are clearly selling us out?

Opponents of the detention center have also launched a petition that states, “I oppose any involvement in, or support of the construction of a new private 2000 bed immigrant detention facility.” The petition is directed to local elected officials as well as Reps. Debbie Wasserman Schultz and Congressman Mario Diaz-Balart.

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