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HC Wake-Up Call: Brooklyn Inmates Protest After Days Without Heat, Reunited Separated Migrant Children Is ‘Impossible’ Official Says & Rep. Tulsi Gabbard’s Presidential Run Begins With Rally


Good morning Her Campus! With a break-neck news cycle, there is no possible way for you to stay on top of every story that comes across your feeds — we’re all only human, after all. 

But, life comes at you fast. So grab a cup of coffee and settle in for this quick and dirty guide to stories you might’ve been sleeping on (like, literally. It’s early.) 

Lack Of Heat At A Federal Prison Leads To Protests & Brooklyn Inmates Begging For Help 

More than a thousand inmates in a Brooklyn, New York jail reported poor heat, a lack of power, and limited hot water since last Monday. This came at a time when temperatures dropped to below freezing from the Polar Vortex. According to The New York Times, federal defenders were “flooded” with complaints from multiple inmates at the Metropolitan Detention Center when temperatures dropped below freezing last week. 

“In the past hour I have gotten 11 calls,” said paralegal Rachel Bass to The Times. “People are frantic. They’re really, really scared. They don’t have extra blankets. They don’t have access to the commissary to buy an extra sweatshirt.” 

A spokesperson from the jail has denied the allegations on Saturday, claiming they’ve experiences a partial power outage from a fire and that heat and hot water haven’t been affected by it. 

“The facility is working to restore power as expeditiously as possible,” a spokesperson told Bustle. “Inmates have hot water for showers and hot water in the sinks in the cell.” The work is expected to be completed by Monday. 

Senior Staff Attorney and Director of Policy at Brooklyn Defender services Scott Hechinger said his office tried to bring new thermals to inmates at the detention center, but were denied. The Times reported that a federal judge ordered the center to allow Deirdre von Dornum, who is the attorney-in-charge of the Federal Defenders for the Eastern District of ew York, to tour the facility. Von Dornum told The Times that she spoke with the inmate through their cell doors and saw that they were dressed in layers with towels wrapped around their heads for more warmth. 

Protests started outside the building on Saturday, CNN reported. People carried signs with the words, “Shut it down” and “Torture at the MDC.” 

Government Official Says Reuniting Separated Children Is Impossible 

NBC News reports that, in a court filing, the Trump administration says finding separated migrant children to reunite them with their parents may not be “within the realm of the possible.” 

Deputy Director of the Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Refugee Resettlement, Jallyn Sualog, filed on Friday in connection to a lawsuit brought by the ACLU to stop family separations in 2018. The government was ordered to reunite all the families, and Sualog was overseeing that effort.

In the declaration, Sualog said that her offices don’t have the resources to track down and reunite all of the children. The number of cases to review would be around 47,000, which Sualog said would take 100 caseworkers working full time for more than a year. 

“Even if performing the analysis Plaintiffs seek were within the realm of the possible, it would substantially imperil ORR’s ability to perform its core functions without significant of the ORR date team,” Sualong said per NBC News

The ACLU’s lead attorney in the suit, Lee Gelernt, condemned the administration's response

“The Trump administration’s response is a shocking concession that it can’t easily find thousands of children it ripped from parents, and doesn’t even think it’s worth the time to locate each of them,” he said. “The administration also does not dispute that separations are ongoing in significant numbers.” 

Tulsi Gabbard Launches 2020 Presidential Run Begins With A Rally In Honolulu

After announcing her campaign, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard officially begins her 2020 presidential run with a rally in Honolulu on Saturday, Huffington Post reports. 

In a speech, Gabbard spoke about the lessons she’s learned while serving in the Armed Forces. She currently serves as a Major in the Army National Guard, and she has served in two tours of duty in the Middle East. 

“They don’t just raise their hand and volunteer to serve only to fight for people of one religion but not another, to fight for people of one race but not another, people of one political party but not another,” Gabbard said of military members decision to serve, according to a video of the event. 

“We serve as one — indivisible, united, unbreakable, united by this bond of love for eachother and love for our country,” she said. “It is this principle of service above self that is at the heart of every soldier. At the heart of every service member. And it is in this spirit that today I announce my candidacy for president of the United States of America.”

According to The Hill, Gabbard said she and her supporters needed to “stand up” to the current administration. She said it “claims to believe in America first, but who sells our troops, our weapons and our interests to whichever foreign country is the highest bidder.” She continued to suggest that the U.S. uses troops as tools without understanding the human impact of deployment. 

“We must stand up against those who dishonor our troops, treating them as political pawns and mercenaries-for-hire in wars around the world,” Gabbard said. “We must stand up—stand up against powerful politicians from both parties who sit in their ivory towers thinking up new wars to wage, new places for people to die.”

Gabbard is joined by a crowd-filled list of contenders for the Democratic presidential nomination that includes Sens. Cory Booker of New Jersey, Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, Kirsten Gillibrand of New York and Kamala Harris of California. Obama administration Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julian Castro will also run. 

What To Look Out For…

If riots breakout from a no-deal Brexit, Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip might be relocated to an undisclosed safe location

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