FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 21, 2018
Contact: Jolene Cardenas,
Director of Communications and Development
Colorado Coalition Against Sexual Assault (CCASA)
Direct Line: 720.330.8922
CCASA DENOUNCES FEDERAL POLICIES THAT INCREASE RISKS FOR ALREADY VULNERABLE IMMIGRANT POPULATIONS
DENVER, CO – The Colorado Coalition Against Sexual Assault (CCASA) joins national partners in expressing deep concern with Speaker Ryan’s Border Security and Immigration Reform Act of 2018. We urge all Members of Congress to vote against this bill.
The proposed Ryan bill slashes our family-based immigration system, guts our asylum laws, and wastes $23 billion taxpayer dollars. It does more to limit protections for DACA-eligible individuals than it does to help them. This bill will undoubtedly harm immigrant youth and family, who have already been subjected to egregious abuse perpetrated by the immigrant detention system. Reports continue to grow of rape used as a tool to oppress and demean detainees who are supposed to be in the care of professionals. This is exemplified by multiple federal civil rights complaints against private detention facility medical staff, such as the mishandling of a rape report of Douglas Menjivar. Menjivar says he was raped by gang members in his cell, and when he reported it to the medical staff they mocked him. The Department of Justice explicitly excludes the use of the Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA) from covering immigration centers leaving an already vulnerable population at a higher risk for abuse and violence committed against them. Another recent example of such atrocities include Laura Monterrosa who was released in March this year from the T. Don Hutto Immigrant Detention Center in Central Texas after surviving months of retaliation and denial of medical services following her rape report.
Nothing in Speaker Ryan’s bill prevents the U.S. government from taking children from their parents and in fact, this bill actually puts children in more danger by keeping them in jail for longer periods of time with fewer standards for their wellbeing. We call on all Members of Congress to reject this bill and adopt a truly bipartisan compromise that provides a permanent solution for Dreamers without harming immigrant families, like the Dream Act or other similar legislation. We also object to the zero-tolerance policy against asylum-seeking families, who are fleeing their homes in the face of unimaginable violence. We will continue our solidarity with immigrant communities throughout Colorado and seek real solutions that ensure the safety and assured protections of all persons regardless of their immigration status.
The Colorado Coalition Against Sexual Assault (CCASA) is a statewide membership organization with the mission of promoting safety, justice, and healing for survivors, while working toward the elimination of sexual violence.