Southern California’s largest immigration detention center is about to get bigger.
The sprawling jail complex in this high desert town currently holds up to 1,300 men in federal immigration custody, many of whom spend months waiting for their cases to be decided. A construction project underway will add 650 beds, including a women’s housing unit.
Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials said the project is necessary to help the agency meet the demand for more bed space in the Los Angeles area. Immigrant advocacy groups are protesting the plan, arguing that the for-profit company that operates the facility has a record of neglect.