Sen. Sherrod Brown said he was denied access to several immigration detention facilities along the border on Sunday.
Brown said Customs and Border Protection agents told him they couldn’t get people to work on Sundays. Brown said he doesn’t buy that.
“I don’t blame the people that were on duty there, they are federal employees that are mostly doing their jobs; I blame the president and the vice-president and the top people at these agencies.”
He held an afternoon roundtable with migrants at the Border Network for Human Rights, a nonprofit migrant advocacy and education center.
Brown plans to introduce legislation that would address the deficiencies he saw in how migrants are treated.
“To require everyone in CBP custody to get timely health screenings. To create real enforceable standards for these centers on nutrition and water and sanitation and shelter and emergency care and all the factors you need when we think about creating humane conditions for people to live.”
Brown also wants to bring more attention to the situation at the border. He says many of those detained are fleeing violence and persecution in countries like Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador. Brown says that until those countries become safer people will continue to come to the United States.
Sen. Rob Portman visited border facilities Friday with Vice President Mike Pence. In a statement, Portman said Congress needs to act quickly to stop the crisis at the border.