Warner and Kaine ask for Trump’s help with ICA Farmville

Published 6:00 am Wednesday, August 5, 2020

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U.S. Sens. Mark Warner (D-VA) and Tim Kaine (D-VA) have sent a letter to President Donald Trump asking for help in addressing the situation at the Immigration Centers of America (ICA) Farmville detention center, the location of the largest coronavirus outbreak of any U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) facility in the country.

In the letter, Warner and Kaine urged President Trump to work with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in order to create and deploy teams of epidemiologists to conduct an assessment of the pandemic’s impact at ICA Farmville.

Last month, Warner and Kaine implored officials to cease the transfer of detainees from various ICE facilities after more than half of a group of 74 individuals transferred to ICA Farmville from detention centers in Arizona and Florida eventually tested positive for the virus.

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As of Monday, Aug. 3, ICE’s website reports 262 COVID-19-positive detainees are currently under isolation or monitoring at the Farmville facility, with 290 total positive cases among the detainee population of 360 people.

“The Farmville ICE facility and surrounding community now face a dire situation where almost every detainee at the Farmville facility has tested positive for COVID-19,” the senators wrote in the July 29 letter to Trump. “This presents a clear risk to individuals within the facility but also endangers the broader community as facility staff and released detainees have interaction with the general public … State and local officials stand ready to support the CDC in efforts to help contain the current outbreak before it spreads to the surrounding Farmville community.”

Friday, July 31, ICE Public Affairs Specialist Kate Pote said one ICA Farmville detainee was actively hospitalized with the virus.