CLINT, Texas (AP) – The head of the U.S. Border Patrol says sexist posts and comments mocking migrant deaths in a closed Facebook group for agents and employees are “completely inappropriate.”
Carla Provost said in a statement Monday that any employee who violated standards will be held accountable. ProPublica published a report on the group that comprises about 9,500 current and former employees. There are about 20,000 active Border Patrol agents.
Group members posted graphic doctored images of U.S. Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a New York Democrat. Other posts refer to Ocasio-Cortez and Rep. Veronica Escobar, of Texas, in sexually explicit ways. One member encouraged agents to throw burritos at them during a facility tour Monday.
The assistant commissioner of the office of professional responsibility says the “disturbing social media activity” is being investigated.
El Paso attorney Carlos Spector released the following statement to KTSM, saying this alleged culture among CBP officers must be denounced by all.
“On July 1, 2019at 8 a.m., I had the pleasure to literally stand by Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (NY-14) who was attending a Hispanic Caucus meeting hosted by Congresswoman Veronica Escobar (TX-16) to listen to El Paso border advocates.
Of special concern was the cruelty, racism, and sexist culture that permeates Border Patrol, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and U.S. Customs and Border Protection.
I stand by Congresswoman Ocasio and Congresswoman Escobar in denouncing these practices and demand an immediate investigation of the law enforcement officers involved in the recent release of alarmingly dangerous statements as members of a secret Border Patrol Facebook group.
CBP’s immediate response was to excuse this incredibly dangerous and insensitive behavior as a result of overwork and fatigue. This is a further indication of DHS’s inability to police itself.
That is why I call for immediate passage of Congresswoman Escobar’s Homeland Security Improvement Act. We should no longer trust DHS to do the right thing, humane thing, or the lawful thing.”– Attorney Carlos Spector