ELOY, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -- An immigration detention center in Eloy is the target of a new report that alleges harsh, degrading and inhumane treatment of migrant detainees. The report, called "The Human Cost of Being Confined," was released by Advancement Project and Puente, two national human rights groups.

They claim that emergency services are insufficient, alleging inadequate and ineffective medication. They also say there's a lack of quality food, asserting that detainees get moldy bread, rancid beans, and water with worms.

[WATCH: "Deplorable and inhumane"]

Alejandra Pablos recently spent 43 days in the Eloy facility after being detained for deportation.

"We saw people coming out in body bags," Pablos said. "We heard of people eating batteries just so they could get some medical attention. I don't know how much worse it can get than that."

The report ranks Eloy as one of the deadliest ICE facilities in the country. Advancement Project and Puente are now calling for an end to immigration detention.

"There should be a humanitarian approach to migration rather than incarcerating people," said Losmin Jimenez of Advancement Project. They should be treated in a way like a refugee, not criminalized, not being prosecuted and put in prison-like conditions."

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement released a statement.

"ICE is committed to ensuring that those in our custody reside in safe, secure and humane environments, and under appropriate conditions, of confinement. However, ICE cannot research or provide individual comment on any allegations of subpar living conditions to include the food served at the Eloy Detention Center, without the specific details, including the names and signed privacy-waiver forms of the current or former detainees who have made these allegations.

"Further, ICE does not tolerate any mistreatment of people in its custody. There are well-known and well-published channels through which ICE detainees may raise their concerns. Reporting such vague, anonymous and inflammatory accusations first to the media is not an effective method for ICE to properly research legitimate allegations. And publishing baseless falsehoods further insults the exceptional work the many fine men and women of ICE do to ensure those in detention are treated with respect and compassion.

"The Eloy Detention Center follows the ICE Performance-Based National Detention Standards that provides a standard of care for all detainees. Of note, comprehensive medical care is provided from the moment detainees arrive until they leave ICE custody. All ICE detainees receive medical, dental and mental health intake screening within 12 hours of arriving at each detention facility, a full health assessment within 14 days of entering ICE custody or arrival at a facility, and access to daily sick call and 24-hour emergency care. Pursuant to our commitment to the welfare of those in the agency's custody, ICE annually spends more than $269 million on the spectrum of healthcare services provided to detainees.

"Posters showing where ICE detainees may submit complaints are prominently displayed throughout all ICE detention facilities."

WHERE TO SUBMIT COMPLAINTS

Director, Office of Professional Responsibility

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement

P.O. Box 14475

Pennsylvania Ave, NW

Washington, D.C. 20044

or 

The Department of Homeland Security, Office of Inspector General:

DHS Office of Inspector General/MAIL STOP 0305

Attn: Office of Investigations - Hotline

245 Murray Lane SW

Washington, DC 20528-0305

Call: 1-800-323-8603

Fax: 202-254-4297

Jason Barry is best known for his Dirty Dining Report which airs Fridays at 6:30 p.m. on CBS 5.  He is also the storyteller behind CBS 5's Pay It Forward which airs every Thursday at 6:30 p.m.
 
 


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