New Dems Endorse Proposed Standards For Border Detainees

July 19, 2019 by Elin Johnson

WASHINGTON – The New Democrat Coalition has endorsed a proposal by Representative Raul Ruiz, D-Calif., to establish enhanced standards of care for people detained at the U.S. border by Customs and Border Patrol.

Ruiz’s bill, the Humanitarian Standards for Individuals in Customs and Border Protection Custody Act, has been referred to the Subcommittee on Immigration and Citizenship.

“In the event that the federal government restricts the free movement of an individual – including their detainment by CBP – then it is the federal government’s responsibility to respect these basic rights and uphold the dignity of human life throughout the process,” the New Democrat Coalition said in its statement of support. 

The New Democrats criticized the Trump administration for not having the proper resources to adequately and humanely detain individuals including those in CBP custody. 

NBC reports that during the Trump administration 24 immigrants have died while in ICE custody, including three since April.

Recent reports have criticized ICE detention centers as having conditions that endangered the health of detainees such as rotten food and inadequate medical care.

“We must take action to prevent more children from dying at the border and meet the basic humanitarian needs of the families under CBP’s custody and responsibility,” Representative Ruiz said. 

“I’d like to thank the New Democrat Coalition for endorsing my bill, a critical step that brings us closer than ever to ensuring our treatment of children, women, and families is consistent with our American values and the principles of basic human dignity,” he added.

On Thursday at least 70 people, including a 90-year-old nun, were arrested for protesting the conditions at the southern border during what was called the Catholic Day of Action. Capitol Police removed protestors from the Russell Senate Office Building rotunda for unlawfully demonstrating, charging them for Crowding, Obstructing, or Incommoding. 

Protestors repeated the Lord’s Prayer and some formed a cross on the floor with their bodies. Many wore photos around their necks of the children who had died in ICE custody.

The New Democrat Coalition is a group of centrist and capitalist Democrats that support a balanced budget and are considered moderate and pro-growth. It currently has 103 members.

Ruiz has represented California since 2013. Ruiz is a physician who specializes in public health and humanitarian issues. He was born in Mexico and grew up in southern California.

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