CORRECTED: Federal judge orders immediate action on conditions at CBP facilities

A federal judge has ordered immediate action be taken to remedy harmful conditions at U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) facilities detaining migrant children, which could include bringing medical professionals, according to The New York Times.  

U.S. District Judge Dolly Gee in a late Friday ruling called for an independent monitor to see that conditions in the detention center are promptly addressed and said that could include using an independent public health expert.

Gee, an Obama appointee, set a July 12 deadline.

The order pertains to all of CBP’s facilities in the El Paso and Rio Grande Valley sectors in Texas. The centers are the subject of a lawsuit regarding the 1997 Flores Settlement Agreement and reports of unsafe and unsanitary conditions at detention centers.

The plaintiffs had asked the court to grant immediate access to the children for health professionals to ensure the conditions are “safe and sanitary” for children being detained there and to assess the children’s medical needs.

The Hill has reached out to CBP for comment. 

Last week, plaintiffs asked the court to hold the Trump administration in contempt and take immediate action to remedy unsafe conditions at border facilities.  

“The children, including infants and expectant mothers, are dirty, cold, hungry and sleep-deprived,” they said, referring to conditions at detention centers, including one in Clint, Texas. 

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

Former Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-Texas), a 2020 presidential candidate, is scheduled to visit the Border Patrol facility in Clint on Sunday. Democratic presidential candidates visited a detention facility in Homestead, Fla., last week and commented on the horrific conditions they witnessed.  

CORRECTION: This story was updated July 1 to show the judge’s order was for an independent monitor to take immediate action to remedy conditions in detention centers.

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