Wednesday, February 12, 2020
Freedom for Immigrants National Immigration Hotline (Featured on Orange is the New Black) Restored, Court Grants Preliminary Injunction Against ICE
Today, Freedom for Immigrants (“FFI”) and its pro bono counsel Hueston Hennigan LLP announced that the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California entered a preliminary injunction and ordered U.S. Immigration & Customs Enforcement (“ICE”) to restore FFI’s National Immigration Detention Hotline (the “Hotline”). The Hotline allows persons in immigration detention to report abuse, find resources, and bridge the divide between detained persons and their family and loved ones.
In 2019, FFI partnered with the popular Netflix show Orange is the New Black (“OITNB”) to portray the plight of persons detained in ICE facilities and increase public knowledge of the work that organizations like FFI do. Season 7 of OITNB featured the Hotline, and press surrounding the July 2019 season premiere focused on the immigrant storylines and FFI’s work. After first restricting the national Hotline to only certain facilities in Florida, ICE completely shut down the Hotline within two weeks of the premiere of OITNB Season 7.
Hueston Hennigan filed a federal lawsuit on behalf of FFI in December 2019 to reinstate FFI’s Hotline that ICE had shut down in retaliation for FFI’s exercise of First Amendment rights, advocating on behalf of persons in immigration detention.