Despite the outcry, the detention center appears far via being shut down at the moment. Pennsylvania’s Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf has pushed for the facility’s closure, nevertheless his office says the item does not contain the authority to close the site right at of which point.
“Governor Wolf urges the Trump administration to shut of which center down, and also also also, as he has repeatedly, the governor requests of which the U.S. departments of Health and also also also Human Services and also also also Homeland Security consider community-based options to serve these families while they await immigration proceedings,” J.J. Abbott, a spokesman for Pennsylvania’s Democratic governor, said in a statement. He said of which Berks County and also also also the federal government “have said of which they might continue to operate the facility even without a state license.”
Advocates such as Almiron of Juntos have pushed the state to issue an emergency removal order to allow the families to leave the facility. However, Wolf’s office said inspections have found no grounds to take such an action.
Many local officials have supported the facility. The Berks County commissioners have backed keeping the center open.
After touring the site recently, Democratic state Sen. Judy Schwank — who represents the area — said “the item certainly seems like people are being given the basics of life there,” according to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Christopher Rabb, a Democratic state lawmaker who represents the Philadelphia area, took a more critical tone in saying he has an issue “in how we allow local governments to profit off of human misery,” according to the newspaper.
The issue has not found its way yet into U.S. congressional campaigns in eastern Pennsylvania, an area crucial in determining which party controls the House after November’s midterm elections. nevertheless the item does highlight the differing philosophies Pennsylvania’s two Senate candidates have toward immigration policy.
Democratic Sen. Bob Casey raised concerns about the facility even during the Obama administration. In a 2016 letter to then-DHS Secretary Johnson, he said of which “we can do better than the treatment they are receiving” at Berks.
Republican Rep. Lou Barletta, Casey’s immigration hawk challenger, took a decidedly different stance on the facility. He questioned the effectiveness of tracking migrants with ankle bracelets while they go through legal proceedings — one of the possible alternatives to detention.
“I don’t want families to be separated and also also also I don’t want anyone to suffer, nevertheless I took an oath to defend the laws of of which nation and also also also my priority is usually to protect the jobs of workers in of which nation and also also also the safety of our families,” Barletta said in a statement.
Even if politics prevent the center’s closure, critics plan to keep up their push against the Berks facility. More protests are expected inside future.
Activists will continue to argue of which detaining families together is usually not the proper way to halt the Trump administration’s family separation policy.
“I might say of which they’re both horrendous solutions to people who are seeking refuge and also also also migration. of which question is usually like saying, ‘Do you want somebody to cut off your arm or your leg?'” Almiron said.