Attorneys call for Trump administration to be held in contempt over border conditions

Attorneys call for Trump administration to be held in contempt over border conditions
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Attorneys on Wednesday asked a federal judge to hold the Trump administration in contempt and take immediate action to remedy unsafe conditions they say threaten the wellbeing of migrant children held at border facilities, according to court filings shared by CNN.

The attorneys said that conditions at U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) facilities in the El Paso, Texas, and the Rio Grande Valley region in Texas pose "an imminent threat to the health and welfare of class member children detained for days and weeks." 

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"The children, including infants and expectant mothers, are dirty, cold, hungry and sleep-deprived," the filing reads. 

The filing says that the facilities deny basic hygiene to the children, which has caused the flu to spread.

The lawsuit is based around lawyers claiming the Trump administration policies are breaking the 1997 Flores agreement, which limits the amount of time the U.S. can detain migrant children.

"With each passing day, more hospitalizations are occurring and more lives are at risk. Immediate judicial intervention is necessary to compel immediate compliance with the [Flores] Agreement, end this health and welfare crisis, and prevent more illness and child deaths at the border," the filing reads.  

The Hill has reached out to the Department of Justice counsel for comment.

At a recent hearing, Department of Justice senior litigation counsel Sarah Fabian testified that the department is compliant with the law. Fabian said a toothbrush and soap were not necessary to fulfill safe and sanitary conditions for detained children. 

CBP has pushed back on allegations of unsafe conditions at border facilities. 

At least six migrant children have died in U.S. custody since September.

Backlash about the conditions at the facilities has intensified in recent weeks, prompting Democratic presidential candidates to visit the Homestead facility in Florida

Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenWarren overtakes Biden in Iowa for first time: poll Warren avoids attacks while building momentum Sanders unveils plan to eliminate Americans' medical debt MORE (D-Mass.) visited the facility on Wednesday and said she peered over the fence to find children who were "being marched like little soldiers, like little prisoners."

Congress is working to pass a border funding bill that would provide more money for resources for the agencies working at the border.