In response to a new report detailing how children and young mothers are going hungry and often being given "inedible" food at federal detention centers in Texas, Sen. Bernie Sanders on Friday vowed to immediately move to reverse President Donald Trump's anti-immigrant policies if elected in 2020.
"This is a disgrace," wrote Sanders, who is running for the Democratic presidential nomination. "No child should go hungry in the United States of America. My first executive orders will be to reverse every single thing President Trump has done to demonize and harm immigrants."
This is a disgrace. No child should go hungry in the United States of America. My first executive orders will be to reverse every single thing President Trump has done to demonize and harm immigrants. https://t.co/jZDqUrSx1x
— Bernie Sanders (@BernieSanders) June 28, 2019
Bloomberg reported Friday that migrants detained at U.S. Customs and Border Protection facilities in Texas are being fed "frozen sandwiches, cold burritos, and potato chips, and detained children and young mothers have complained of hunger to visiting attorneys."
Rafael Perez-Escamilla, professor of epidemiology at the Yale School of Public Health, told Bloomberg that the food provided at the facility is "appalling" and does not meet federal dietary guidelines.
According to Bloomberg:
A DHS spokesman didn't respond to specific questions about the processing centers' food and beverage services.
Menu options at the McAllen Texas Central Processing Center were severely limited on June 10, 11, and 12, when Toby Elizabeth Gialluca, a lawyer who volunteers for the Center for Human Rights and Constitutional Law, visited it. Her organization monitors conditions at immigrant detention centers, like the CBP's at McAllen.
Gialluca, who interviewed seven mother-daughter pairs and one teenage boy, found people in poor condition—many of whom complained they'd lost weight. "They were vomiting and had diarrhea—whether from the flu or the food or a combination thereof, I can't say," she said. "Mothers would say, 'my child can't drink the water or eat the food, it makes them sick.'"
"The situation at the detention centers in Texas is worse than you can imagine," tweeted Bloomberg reporter Deena Shanker, who bylined the story. "It is hard not to spend every moment thinking about these poor mothers and children."