Uinta County immigration detention center will not be built

Photo courtesy: MGN
Photo courtesy: MGN(KKTV)
Published: Apr. 11, 2020 at 11:36 PM CDT
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Construction plans for an immigration detention center in Uinta County have been canceled after several groups protested against the southwestern Wyoming facility.

CoreCivic was planning to build the facility for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement to hold about 1,000 people in civil detention while awaiting deportation proceedings in Salt Lake City, about 80 miles (129 kilometers) west of Uinta County, the Casper Star-Tribune reported.

“After participating in the process to date in good faith, there were ultimately a number of factors that made it difficult for us to consider proceeding,” the company said in a statement posted on the county website.

The county was informed of the decision Tuesday, Uinta County Commission chairman Eric South said.

“It means we won’t have 250 jobs coming in,” South said. “The tax base will stay flat, where we’re already struggling.”

Multiple organizations, including the American Civil Liberties Union and the Latino immigrants activist group Juntos, campaigned against the facility and questioned the history of the company pursuing it.

“We’re thrilled that CoreCivic has withdrawn its plans to pursue an immigration prison outside of Evanston,” ACLU of Wyoming organizer Antonio Serrano said. “Private prison companies like CoreCivic put profit above lives, and an immigration prison would bring ICE closer to Wyoming’s Latino and immigrant communities, expanding its ability to prey on immigrants and break apart families in Wyoming.”