Rep. Grijalva Statement on Whistleblower Complaint Alleging Inhumane Conditions and Human Rights Abuses at For-Profit Immigrant Detention Center

September 15, 2020
Press Release

TUCSON Yesterday, media reports confirmed a whistleblower complaint filed that alleges numerous health and human rights abuses at the Irwin Country Detention Center in Georgia, privately run by the for-profit prison corporation LaSalle Corrections. In addition to not following COVID-19 safety protocols, the complaint alleges that high rates of hysterectomies were performed on women detainees who often did not need the procedure. In response, Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva issued the following statement:

“These allegations are horrific and demand an immediate investigation. Any federal or state contracts with this facility should be revoked pending the outcome of the investigation. The extent to which this country has terrorized immigrant women under the Trump administration is barbaric. First, it was separating mothers from their children, and now numerous reports of absolute brutalization from a private detention industry that is forcibly sterilizing women detainees and forcing them to undergo medical procedures they do not fully understand.

“This is the reality of Trump’s Presidency where profits come before humanity. It’s a world where human rights don’t matter, accountability is nonexistent, and the fates of those in detention are left to the whims of those who abuse their power.

“These women will never get back what they have lost, but justice must be served. I will be joining my colleagues in demanding an independent investigation into these abuses. Any investigation should result in consequences for those involved, and that includes prosecuting them to the fullest extent of the law.

“I applaud the courage of the whistleblower. Abuses like these are rampant in the private prison and detention industry and have continued with impunity for far too long. I will continue demanding Congress pass my Justice Is Not For Sale Act which would ban private prisons and detention centers and end immigrant family detention once and for all.”

 

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