Transparency is a Hallmark of MTC’s Operations in Detention…Take a Look

Immigration has been a big topic over the last few years. At MTC, we operate four detention centers for Immigration & Customs Enforcement or ICE. And while we don’t have anything to do with immigration policy, we believe it’s important for the public to see how MTC operates ICE detention centers. Transparency is vital.

Elected officials, like Mayor Gilbert Gonzales often tour our detention centers. Gonzales is the mayor of Raymondville, Texas which is where we operate the El Valle Detention Facility.

“I’m very impressed with all your staff here,” says Mayor Gonzales.

Willacy County Commissioner Eliberto Guerra meets with Warden Frank Venegas from the El Valle facility. He says, “Willacy County is very grateful for your contribution to our county.”

MTC wants our communities to see for themselves how our facilities are managed.

We often invite the media to visit our detention centers. Imperial Valley Press reporter Julio Morales recently toured MTC’s Imperial Valley Regional Detention Facility in Calexico, California.

We also open our doors to dozens of volunteers every day who provide various services to detainees.

Balmeet Singh, a volunteer with the Sikh community in California, recently brought a group of volunteers to hold a religious gathering with detainees at the Imperial facility.

“We are very grateful on behalf of the Sikh community,” he says, “to the chaplain here and to all of the staff for providing support and allowing us to come in, and to provide hope to those who have come here.”

Margaret Sauza is the executive director of Sure HelpLine Crisis Center, a victim’s advocacy group. She and her staff frequently visit MTC’s Imperial facility to provide various services to the detainees.

“My experience,” says Margaret, “has been wonderful since day one. It’s a very clean, a very good environment, and very friendly. We get an opportunity to talk one-to-one with the detainees, so my staff and myself really enjoy coming here.”

Even leaders of the Mexican Consulate frequently visit our facilities.

Carlos Flores, who’s with the Mexican Consulate in Calexico, says, “MTC is a very modern, it’s a very functional. And it’s a very clean place, where you treat the [detainees] respectfully.”

And members of the community are always welcome to learn more about what we do. John Colquitt lives in Chaparral, New Mexico where MTC operates the Otero County Processing Center for ICE.

“Whenever we’ve had tours through the facilities, I’ve always been very impressed with how orderly everything is, how clean everything is; the educational programs, the quality of the food…it’s just been, I would say, a real eye-opener to see how well run it is.”

Martha Garcia is the Superintendent/President of Imperial Valley College in California. She recently toured MTC’s Imperial facility.

“Specifically coming from an institution of higher education, it is definitely impressive that you’re able to offer an array of programs that focus on supporting the detainees. Excellent job and commitment to helping them.”

And Giovanna Wells, Desert Valley High School teacher, also saw for herself the services offered to detainees at the Imperial facility.

“I think people have a pre-conceived notion of what a detention facility is like, but this facility is very, you know, they want the detainees to go out and be able to start a new life.”

About Otero County Processing Center

The Otero County Processing Center is a dedicated detention center that provides detainees with quality medical care, legal resources and other resources.