Forced Sterilization of Immigrant Women

Protest Outside of the Irwin County Detention Center

Recently, a nurse who formerly worked at an Immigration Customs Enforcement (ICE) detention center in Oscilla, Georgia alleged that hysterectomies were being performed on women without their proper consent. Hysterectomies are medical procedures that remove all or part of the uterus, effectively sterilizing women. The nurse at the Irwin County Detention Center described how many of the women thought that they were getting another procedure done and did not understand that they were getting hysterectomies. She described one gynecologist in particular who would sterilize every single woman that he saw. 

Sadly, this story of forced sterilization is not new to U.S. society. There is a long history of unwanted sterilizations being carried out against women, particularly immigrants, Black people, Native people, the poor, the incarcerated, and others seen as “undesirables” by people in power. 

The whistleblower also spoke out against the overall medical neglect, lack of care, terribly unsanitary conditions, and unsafe work practices in these facilities, especially in light of COVID-19. 

To make matters worse, the Trump administration has recently boasted about conducting an “immigration enforcement blitz,” particularly in “sanctuary cities.” ICE raids are expected to be ramped up across the country. For the Trump administration, this is a political maneuver leading up to the election. For millions of immigrants and their families, it represents terror. 

We must stand together against all of the attacks on immigrants!