Residents at the Berks Residential Center have the right to be safe and free from sexual abuse and sexual harassment. The Berks County Residential Center (BCRC) adheres to a zero tolerance standard against all forms of sexual abuse and sexual harassment. All staff, contractors and volunteers shall report all suspicions, incidents and/or allegations of sexual abuse and sexual harassment in accordance with applicable laws, the current ICE Residential Standard on Sexual Abuse and Assault Prevention and Intervention (SAAPI) and the Prison Rape Elimination Act of 2003. It is the policy of the Berks County Residential Center (BCRC) to file a reportable incident report for any child under our care for any incident that is set forth by the Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare regulations.
Anyone can report an allegation or suspected incident of sexual abuse or sexual harassment; including residents, staff, or third parties. This can include allegations that may have occurred at another facility. At the Berks Residential Center, there are multiple options to file a report; including, but not limited to:
- Notify any staff member at the Center either verbally or in writing
- Residents may call the PREA hotline numbers posted at the Center.
- File a formal or informal grievance
- Send a letter to the Executive Director of the Center
- Notify ICE staff at the Center verbally or in writing
- Contact the ICE/ERO Philadelphia Field Office telephonically or in writing
- Report to DHS or ICE Head Quarters:
- Call ICE Community and Detainee Hotline at 1-888-351-4024: or
- Contact the ICE Office of Professional Responsibility (OPR) Joint Intake Center (JIC) at 1-888-351-4024; or
- Write a letter to: P.O. Box 14475, 1200 Pennsylvania, Ave. NW, Washington, D.C. 20044
- It is not required that any personal information be provided. However, the more information that can be provided regarding dates, times, locations, witnesses, and as much detail about the alleged incident as is known serves to assist staff and law enforcement in their efforts to successfully conduct the investigations.
All allegations of sexual assault, sexual abuse or sexual harassment shall be promptly, thoroughly, and objectively investigated. Allegations of Sexual Abuse will be referred to the appropriate law enforcement agency for investigation and potential prosecution. All substantiated allegations of sexual abuse or sexual harassment will result in the appropriate disciplinary actions taken against the Employee, Contractor, Volunteer, or Resident, and where appropriate will be referred for prosecution. Criminal allegations are generally referred t to local law enforcement agencies.