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Congresswoman Brenda Lawrence

Representing the 14th District of Michigan

Democratic Women’s Caucus Leadership Calls for Investigation Following Reports of Forced Hysterectomies at ICE Facility

September 15, 2020
Press Release

Washington, DC – Today, the Democratic Women’s Caucus (DWC) led by Co-Chairs Brenda Lawrence (MI-14), Lois Frankel (FL-21), Jackie Speier (CA-14), and Vice Chairs Veronica Escobar (TX-16) and Deb Haaland (NM-01) issued the following statement calling for an investigation following reports of forced hysterectomies at an ICE Facility.

“The allegations of mass hysterectomies being forced on immigrant women are reprehensible and reveal gross human rights violations. Mass hysterectomies have a long and shameful history in the United States, and forced sterilization has been used to further white supremacy, ableism, and other forms of discrimination. Tragically, these allegations are only the latest in a series of well-documented abuses and medical deficiencies in immigration detention, including the shackling of pregnant women, miscarriages after inadequate prenatal care in custody, and medical negligence resulting in deaths.”

“As the leadership of the Democratic Women’s Caucus, we are calling on the Department of Homeland Security Office of Inspector General to fully investigate the horrific allegations detailed in the whistleblower complaint. Congress must know why these procedures were performed on women without their informed consent. The investigation must be on-the-ground and detailed; OIG must not simply rely on the statements of ICE and its contractors.”

“The Trump Administration continues to maliciously abandon its responsibility to care for the lives, dignity, and safety of immigrant families they needlessly detain. The women who have endured these abuses did not need to be detained by ICE – they could have been participating in the immigration court system from the safety of their homes and communities. The immigration detention system cannot be fixed; instead, it is long past time for us to look to more humane and fiscally responsible options for immigration processing and stop the unnecessary jailing of immigrants.”