Hormone treatments for transgendered detainees, abortion services and extensive outlets for complaints—these are just a few of the reasons Texas Republican House Judiciary Committee Chairman Rep. Lamar Smith is not pleased with the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) recently released Performance-Based National Detention Standards (PBNDS).
In the spirit of detention reform, in 2011, for the first time since 2008, ICE finished its revision of detention standards for those being held for being in the country illegally. Those new standards were released this month. ICE has already started to implement the changes.
“The Obama administration’s new detention manual is more like a hospitality guideline for illegal immigrants,” Smith wrote in a statement. “The administration goes beyond common sense to accommodate illegal immigrants and treats them better than citizens in federal custody.”
The standards chronicle a wide range of amenities and rights accorded to each detainee during their stay, including extensive regulations on things such as body searches, room space, recreational time, visitation, the interaction ICE officials can have with them and food expectations—including adherence to detainee dietary restrictions.
The standards also outline a wide range of medical procedures available to those in detention facilities, including services such as abortion access, hormone treatments for transgendered people, dental work and a 15-day supply of medications upon release, deportation or transfer.