ICE Accountability Report
Following a series of disturbing reports at immigration detention centers around the country and refusal by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to claim responsibility for the medical conditions at private, for-profit detention centers, Congressman Jason Crow is stepping in to provide the oversight that ICE has failed to fill. On July 9, his office announced they will be conducting weekly visits of the Aurora Contract Detention Facility every Monday at 12:00pm.
The goal of these visits is to obtain information about the treatment of the detainees and possible public health crises. Upon completion of each tour, Crow will release the report on his website to inform the public of the information obtained by his office.
In February of 2019, following multiple cases of disease outbreaks at the Aurora Contract Detention Facility operated for ICE by GEO Group, Congressman Crow made an unannounced visit to the federal facility where he was denied entry. Ultimately, Crow was denied entry for 24 days. Since his first days in office, Crow has been a leader in the fight for governmental transparency and accountability.
Below please find outline a timeline of events relating to the Aurora Contract Detention Facility and Crow’s work holding ICE accountable.
Timeline of Events
February 11: Crow holds conference call with detainees at the Aurora Contract Detention Facility (“Facility”) and immigration lawyers to discuss disturbing reports regarding the conditions the facility
February 20: Crow makes unannounced visit to Facility and sends letter to DHS Secretary Nielsen regarding public health concerns at the facility. Following concerns raised by Crow, ICE reveals a mumps outbreak
February 21: Crow leads call with the Tri-County Health Department and the Colorado Health Department to discuss public health concerns
February 28: Crow leads coalition letter with nine other members of Congress to ICE Acting Director Vitiello demanding answers on public health risks at immigration detention facility and ICE’s oversight role
March 1: Crow requests tour of facility and is denied
March 4: Crow requests tour of facility and is denied. Media is given a tour of the facility
March 15: 24 days after his initial request, Crow is given entry and tour of the facility
April 4: Crow leads letter with 19 other colleagues to Appropriations Subcommittee on Homeland Security Chairwoman and Ranking Member to include language allowing Members of Congress into all detention facilities within 48 hours of request
April 16: Crow obtains copy of the 2011 contract between ICE and GEO Group through a public website
May 20: Crow introduces Public Oversight of Detention Center (POD) Act, a bill to require members of Congress to gain access to federal immigration detention centers within 48 hours of request
June 12: Crow successfully secures amendment in the National Defense Authorization Act to prohibit defense spending to be used to house forcibly separated children from their families
June 25: Four months after sending letter to ICE,Crow receives response where ICE denies responsibility for medical conditions at private, for-profit detention centers
June 26: Crow partners with Rep. Joe Neguse to request congressional hearing to investigate activities of GEO Group
June 28: Four months after sending letter to DHS, Crow receives response
July 9: Crow launches weekly visits to the facility
December 20: POD Act is signed into law as part of a FY 2020 spending bill, allowing all members of Congress to access immigration detention facilities with no notice, and for congressional staff to gain entry with only 24 hours notice
A template of the accountability report that the office of Rep. Crow will be using can be seen here. Questions are based on ICE’s Performance-Based National Standards, updated as of 2016.