Press Releases

Houlahan, Casey Press ICE on Berks Residential Center, Condemn Family Detention

Washington, October 24, 2019

WASHINGTON – Today, Representative Chrissy Houlahan (D-PA) and Senator Bob Casey (D-PA) are calling on U.S. Customs and Immigration Enforcement (ICE) to provide more information on the Berks County Residential Center. The letter follows a visit to the center, concerning reports of migrant families being denied access to medical care, mental health services, adequate sleep and information about the length of their detention while being held in the Berks facility. The letter also seeks data regarding the length of time families are detained, and clarity on the medical, mental health and other services provided to families, with an emphasis on the availability of specialized care for children.

“During our visit, we were informed that residents have access to medical services at all hours provided by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Health Service Corps,” wrote Representative Houlahan and Senator Casey. “However, we have heard troubling accounts of medical care not being provided until children are very ill. We have also heard that when residents are sent to the hospital or outside medical services and provided a prescription, those prescriptions will not be filled automatically. Rather, ICE providers will review and determine whether to provide the treatment. In addition, there have been reported instances of families being separated when a parent or child is sent to outside medical services.”

The letter urged ICE officials to address the disturbing reports and provide more information about the treatment of residents at the facility.

To read Rep. Houlahan and Sen. Casey’s letter, click here.

Houlahan is an Air Force veteran, an engineer, a serial entrepreneur, an educator, and a nonprofit leader. She’s in her first term representing Pennsylvania’s 6th Congressional District, which encompasses Chester County and southern Berks County. She serves on the House Armed Services Committee, the House Foreign Affairs Committee, and the House Small Business Committee.

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