Congressman visits immigration detention center

TACOMA — A Washington state congressman who toured a federal immigration detention center in Tacoma says he thinks detainees who have taken part in a hunger strike have raised some legitimate issues.

The News Tribune reported that Rep. Adam Smith said he met with three detainees Thursday.

The Democrat says his biggest concern “is that there are no legislative standards for what the conditions should be.” He mentioned the $1 per day wages for working detainees and commissary prices as among the strikers’ issues.

Smith says his next step is to review audits of the facility.

A U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement official said two detainees remained under medical observation Wednesday, but were occasionally eating.

The strike began March 7 with hundreds of participants refusing to eat to call for better treatment and an end to deportations.

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