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Quigley: Inhumane Treatment of Detained Immigrants Cannot Be Rewarded with Repeated ICE Budget Increases

Nov 7, 2017

WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Representative Mike Quigley (IL-05) spoke on the House Floor to shine a spotlight on the horrific state of our nation’s immigration detention centers and to demand accountability from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).

Click here to watch the video or see the full transcript below.

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to shed light on the appalling state of our nation’s immigration detention centers.

Devoid of health services and basic medical standards, these ICE facilities are cruel and inhumane.

Suicide rates are high, children and families are traumatized, and LGBT detainees are subject to alarming rates of abuse.

These centers are also expensive—daily operations cost $165 per detainee and $2 billion annually, despite detention alternatives that can cost as little as $9 per day.

Yet, even with this track record, ICE funding has nearly doubled from the Bush Administration to today and transparency has fallen by the wayside under the current administration, all while conditions continue to deteriorate.

Over my time in Congress I have called for investigations of abuse at detention centers, and I have introduced legislation to improve living conditions.

Inhumane treatment of the undocumented cannot be rewarded with repeated budget increases. It goes against our country’s most fundamental values and cannot continue.

We must cut ICE’s budget until these concerns are addressed.