WASHINGTON, D.C. – Yesterday, U.S. Senator Jacky Rosen (D-NV), a member of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee (HSGAC), questioned top Department of Homeland Security (DHS) officials, calling for immediate congressional action to address the humanitarian crisis at the southern border. During her remarks, Senator Rosen highlighted media coverage of the recent tragic deaths of a father and child.
“We all saw that awful, heartbreaking photo of the toddler who drowned while clutching her father’s neck. I can’t even begin to imagine, as a mother, what those last moments for that father and daughter were like. I do pray that this photo and what we talk about today moves this body into action,” said Senator Rosen. “Nothing, nothing in my mind is more heartbreaking.”
BACKGROUND: This past week, Senator Rosen joined her colleagues in sending a letter to Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and Ranking Member Patty Murray (D-WA) requesting a hearing on the health and safety conditions of migrant children arriving at the southern border. Earlier this month, Rosen led 17 of her colleagues in sending a letter to DHS Acting Secretary Kevin McAleenan, raising concerns about a recent Office of Inspector General report detailing severe and dangerous overcrowding of migrants at El Paso Del Norte Processing Center during unannounced inspections conducted on May 8 and 9, 2019.
During a recent Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Government Affairs hearing, Rosen questioned DHS Acting Secretary Kevin McAleenan on deceptive statements made by DHS officials to Senator Rosen and Congressman Salud Carbajal (CA-24) during their 2018 visit to the US-Mexico Border. Rosen called out blatant discrepancies between DHS’s public statements and its representations about the Department’s ability to reunite separated children with their families, and internal agency emails that revealed the agency knew it lacked the information needed to reunite parents and relatives with their children. Rosen also asked McAleenan to commit to telling the truth regarding the Administration’s immigration policies going forward.
Senator Rosen is a co-sponsor of the Safe Environment from Countries Under Repression and in Emergency (SECURE) Act, which would allow qualified Temporary Protected Status (TPS) and Deferred Enforced Departure (DED) recipients to apply for legal permanent residency. Rosen is also a co-sponsor of the Keep Families Together Act, which would ensure that the federal government carries out immigration procedures in the best interest of detained children.