Village of Dwight approves immigration detention center despite protests

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DWIGHT, Ill. — The Dwight Village Board approved three items that will allow the Immigration Centers of America to build a for-profit detention center.

Monday night’s vote by village trustees makes the detention center closer to happening, but opponents are vowing to keep up the fight.

Things got pretty heated during the board meeting, which had to be held in the high school gym to accommodate an overflow crowd.

Despite opposition, the board voted 5-2 to allow annexation of 88-acres as a possible site for a $20-million detention facility.

The for-profit operation would be managed by ICE to house undocumented immigrants who are screened as non-criminals, as they await immigration hearings.

Critics are concerned about community safety and the necessity of housing undocumented immigrants.

Supporters tout the economic impact and the creation of new jobs, especially since the closing of the women’s prison in Dwight several years ago.

The board decision does not make it a done deal, but it may sway Immigration Centers of America, which is also considering several other locations around the country.

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