Pelosi + 177 House Democrats to DHS: ‘End Family Detention Now’

WASHINGTON, D.C. –(ENEWSPF)—July 31, 2015. In a letter signed by 178 members of Congress today, House Democrats called on the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to end its controversial Family Detention Program. Congressman Gutiérrez said about this letter: “I am pleased that so many of my House colleagues including our top leaders are united in telling the President and Secretary of Homeland Security that putting moms and kids in detention just does not comport with our values as a Americans.  We have been making progress towards ending family detention all year, but the court ruling and the unity of Democrats on this matter make it clear that family detention is almost over.  And good riddance.”

Rep. Luis V. Gutiérrez has been working closely with Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-CA) and Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-CA) in pushing for an end to family detention for women and children.  

This Press releases (in ENGLISH y ESPAÑOL) with links to the letter are below.

The letter (pdf), led by U.S. Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-Calif.), comes on the heels of a U.S. District Court ruling late last week that the detention of immigrant women and children violated terms of the 1997 Flores Settlement, and urges DHS to “take all necessary and appropriate steps to bring the Department’s practices in line with the settlement agreement and the recent court ruling.”

The letter notes the “strong evidence that such detention is detrimental to mothers and children and is not reflective of our Nation’s values,” and that now “is long past time to end family detention.”

Full text of the letter is below:

Dear Secretary Johnson:

In May of this year, 136 Members of Congress wrote to you to express serious concern regarding the Department of Homeland Security’s detention of thousands of mothers and children in secure, jail-like facilities.  The purpose of the letter was to alert you to the strong evidence that such detention is detrimental to mothers and children and is not reflective of our Nation’s values.  The detained population is largely comprised of refugees fleeing violence and persecution, many of whom have serious medical and mental health needs that have been inadequately addressed in custody.  You were urged to end the use of family detention.

Last Friday, a federal judge issued a ruling finding that the Department’s family detention practices constitute a material breach of a Court-approved class-wide settlement agreement.  Flores v. Johnson, CV 85-4544 (C.D. Cal. July 24, 2015).  Judge Dolly M. Gee found that the Department’s decision to house children in secure facilities that are not licensed by any State agency to care for dependent children violated the 20-year-old Flores settlement agreement.  The court also rejected the Department’s request to amend that settlement agreement in lieu of remedying the numerous violations.

It is long past time to end family detention.  In light of this recent federal court ruling, we urge you take all necessary and appropriate steps to bring the Department’s practices in line with the settlement agreement and the recent court ruling.

La Líder Demócrata de la Cámara de Representantes Nancy Pelosi y 177 Demócratas le enviaron la siguiente carta al Secretario de Seguridad Nacional Jeh Johnson.  En la carta, los representantes Demócratas le piden que ponga fin al uso de detención familiar.

La versión en inglés con las firmas de los representantes se encuentra aquí.  Muchas gracias.

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31 de julio de 2015

Estimado Secretario Johnson:

En mayo de este año, 136 representantes del Congreso estadounidense le enviaron una carta expresando su preocupación sobre los centros de detención del Departamento de Seguridad Nacional donde permanecen detenidas miles de madres y niños.  El propósito de esa carta fue alertarlo a la fuerte evidencia de los efectos severos y negativos que permanecer en custodia, en instalaciones que parecen prisiones, tiene sobre estas madres y niños.  Y recordarle que esta práctica no refleja los valores de nuestro país.  La mayoría de las personas detenidas son refugiados que vienen huyendo la violencia y la persecución.  Muchos de ellos tienen necesidades médicas y psicológicas que no han sido adecuadamente examinadas o tratadas mientras estos han permanecido en custodia.  Le exhortamos que ponga fin al uso de detención familiar.

El viernes pasado, una Jueza Federal emitió una decisión encontrando que las prácticas de detención familiar del Departamento de Seguridad Nacional violan un previo acuerdo que fue aprobado por la corte en el caso de Flores v. Johnson.  La Jueza Dolly M. Gee encontró que la decisión del Departamento de poner a niños en instalaciones de detención, que no están autorizadas por ninguna agencia estatal para cuidar de niños dependientes, viola el acuerdo Flores que ha existido por 20 años.  La corte también rechazó la petición del Departamento de modificar ese acuerdo como manera de remediar las numerosas violaciones.

Es tiempo para poner fin a la detención familiar.  En vista de esta reciente decisión de la corte federal, le exhortamos que tome todas las medidas necesarias y apropiadas para asegurar que las prácticas del Departamento de Seguridad Nacional estén en línea con el acuerdo Flores y la reciente decisión judicial.

Signed: U.S. Reps. Lofgren, Gutierrez, Roybal-Allard, Conyers, Adam Smith, Beyer, Norton, Brady (PA), Deutch, Chu, Lee, Langevin, Loretta Sanchez, Gallego, Ellison, Sires,  Jackson Lee, Lujan Grisham, Quigley, Lieu, Cummings, Hank Johnson,  Farr, O’Rourke, Capps, McGovern, Doggett, DeGette, Napolitano, Kennedy, Frankel, Van Hollen, Tonko, Sablan, Bass, Takano, Nadler, Richmond, Cardenas, Blumenauer, Titus, Engel, Larson, Grijalva, Wilson, Welch, Serrano, Kaptur, Edwards, Cohen, McCollum, Esty, Eshoo, Becerra, Grayson,  Kilmer, Clark, Hinojosa, DeLauro, Vargas, Ruiz, Castro, Fattah, Carson, Linda Sanchez, Watson Coleman, Meng, Crowley, Swalwell, Danny Davis, Matsui, Norcross, Schakowsky, Brownley, Slaughter, Clarke, Al Green, Polis, Lujan, Cicilline, Capuano, Yarmuth, Hoyer, Gene Green, Aguilar, Honda, Murphy, Moore, Hahn, Corrine Brown, Rangel, Vela, Castor, Torres, Butterfield, Bishop, Clyburn, Connolly, Susan Davis, DeSaulnier, Fudge, Hastings, Huffman, Eddie Bernice Johnson, Kildee, Lewis, Lowenthal, Lowey, Maloney, McDermott, McNerney, Meeks, Neal, Nolan, Pallone, Payne, Pingree, Plaskett, Bobby Scott, Sewell, Thompson, Veasey, Velazquez, DelBene, Kind, Duckworth, Schiff, Dingell, Takai, Kelly, Israel, Wasserman Schultz, Carney, Ruppersburger, Jeffries, Sinema, Gabbard, Beatty, Garamendi, Bordallo, Clay, Keating, Bennie Thompson, Tsongas, Waters, Pascrell, Tim Ryan, Pocan, Scott Peters, Pelosi, Sherman, Foster, Adams, Kuster, Bishop, Bonamici, Bordallo, Costa, Bera, Lawrence, Levin, Rush, Spier, Cartwright, Loesback, Sarbanes, Doyle, Ashford, Pierlusi, Perlmutter.

Source: www.Gutierrez.house.gov