Democratic rep says border agents need retraining after seeing 'inhumane' migrant facility conditions

Democratic rep says border agents need retraining after seeing 'inhumane' migrant facility conditions
© Greg Nash

Rep. Norma TorresNorma Judith TorresHouse Rules Committee approves remote voting during pandemic House Democrats push for virtual naturalization ceremonies in next coronavirus relief package House Democrats push for protections for health care workers in next aid package MORE (D-Calif.) on Tuesday slammed migrant detention centers for “inhumane conditions,” and called for border agents to be retrained.

Torres, who toured three border facilities in Texas on Monday, said migrant women in the centers told her there was no running water in their cell, except for a toilet.

“It is inhumane. It is embarrassing,” Torres said in an appearance on CNN’s “New Day.”


“And what we need to do is we need to send every single one of these border agents back to training.”

The California lawmaker added, “The world ought to be outraged about what is happening here within our nation, and I call on the world to act and demand better.”

Torres cited cement jail cells with “children that are sitting and sleeping on the floor with an air conditioner going full blast, wearing nothing but dirty clothes and being covered with an aluminum type of sheet.”

“Imagine your child having to live under those conditions,” she said, adding that border agents “have shown very poor, very little judgment on how it is to treat people that are in desperate condition.”

The Democratic lawmaker noted that the Border Patrol agency is “overwhelmed” by a massive uptick in migrants entering the U.S., but that “management needs to step up and ensure that they are given all of the resources that they need.”

Congress passed a $4.6 billion emergency border funding bill last month that aims to provide humanitarian aid and address the influx in migrants.

The Trump administration has continued to get backlash for its hard-line immigration policies, as well as reports of unsanitary conditions and a lack of resources at migrant detention centers.

Torres joins several Democratic lawmakers in decrying the status of these facilities, including Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-CortezAn affordable zero-emissions grid needs new nuclear Recovery First: The American comeback shouldn't hinge on warmed-over policy agendas Ocasio-Cortez blames 'political power' of police for lack of accountability following George Floyd's death MORE (D-N.Y.), who labeled these facilities "concentration camps."

“If we need babysitters there at those locations, then we should have babysitters to care for these children. If we need nurses there to care for the ill, we should be having nurses there,” she said. “And if people are so sick that they have to be quarantined away from the rest of the detainees, then they should not be sleeping on the cold floor the way we saw them."