WASHINGTON – Congressman Raúl M. Grijalva (D-AZ) and Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) issued statements today after Department of Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson announced that the agency will review its use of private detention facilities.
“I am glad the Department of Homeland Security is reviewing its reliance on the for-profit prison industry to detain immigrants to our country,” Grijalva said. “This step is a tacit admission that the corporations who profit by locking up desperate adults and children undermine our decency as a nation. DOJ’s announcement last week that it would cut ties with incarceration profiteers was welcome, but long overdue. I hope that DHS’s review is a signal that they will follow suit. Until they do, their association with this industry will continue to besmirch their reputation as servants of the American people, and prolong the black eye that for-profit detention has given our nation’s reputation around the world.”
Grijalva and Sanders asked the Department of Homeland Security last week to end its use of private, for-profit detention facilities.
They also joined forces last September to introduce the Justice Is Not For Sale Act, which would ban private prisons, end family detention and remove Immigration and Custom Enforcement’s (ICE) daily mandate to fill 34,000 beds with detainees.
“The Department of Homeland Security should follow the lead of the Department of Justice and phase out for-profit, privately run immigration detention facilities. These private prisons cost more and are less humane,” Sanders said.