House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) announced on Wednesday she supports House Democrats calling for an investigation into allegations that a contract doctor performed illegal sterilization procedures on migrant women at a detention center in Georgia.
A bombshell whistleblower complaint claimed that an independent doctor performed an unusual number of hysterectomies on female ICE detainees at a privately-run Irwin County Detention Center in Ocilla, Ga.
According to the complaint, a nurse at the detention facility, Dawn Wooten, said that a particular doctor that contracted with the facility performed a high number of hysterectomies and that staff questioned the reasoning behind the pattern.
The report did not contain any examples of women that came forward to corroborate the claims. The Washington Post noted:
Priyanka Bhatt, staff attorney at Project South, acknowledged to The Washington Post that she did not speak to any women who had a forced sterilization, and said she included the allegations in the report with the intention of triggering an investigation into whether or not the claims were true.
“I didn’t speak to anyone who had one,” Bhatt said. “But the things we have heard are concerning, and we need to find out more information.”
Nevertheless, Pelosi seized upon the unsubstantiated report for yet another Democrat-led investigation. Prominent Trump critics have abandoned their immigration-related attacks on Trump in favor of Black Lives Matter advocacy, but that doesn’t mean they wouldn’t love a new opportunity to go after him over ICE and illegal immigration once again.
Pelosi issued a statement concerning the matter, calling the allegations a “staggering abuse of human rights:”
If true, the appalling conditions described in the whistleblower complaint – including allegations of mass hysterectomies being performed on vulnerable immigrant women – are a staggering abuse of human rights.
This profoundly disturbing situation recalls some of the darkest moments of our nation’s history, from the exploitation of Henrietta Lacks, to the horror of the Tuskegee Syphilis Study, to the forced sterilizations of Black women that Fannie Lou Hamer and so many others underwent and fought.
173 Democrats joined Pelosi in calling for an investigation into “new whistleblower allegations of mass hysterectomies being performed on women detained at the privately-run Irwin County Detention Center in Ocilla, Ga.”