As you know, we’ve heard a lot in the news lately about immigration. It’s a controversial and heated topic. While I don’t think there are any easy answers, I do believe there are things we can and should do to protect human dignity. One way to do this is to make sure the men and women being held by Immigration and Customs Enforcement are treated well.

I think the Otero County Processing Center in Chaparral, New Mexico, is a great example of the way a detention center should be run. I have visited the center on many occasions. It is clean, well-maintained and a very good environment. Staff are trained to respect and treat everyone with great care and dignity. You can see it in their daily interactions. And you can see in the faces of the detainees that they feel comfortable with staff and with the services they receive.

I’m impressed with the medical and dental care detainees receive. If they have any medical issues, they have access to a doctor, nurses and other healthcare professionals. For a lot of these people, they’re seeing a doctor for the first time.

Detainees also have access to online legal resources to help them with their cases. The facility has a library with hundreds of books. Migrants are given three nutritious meals a day. They can talk or visit with family. They can participate in recreation daily. There are even educational and other services available to help the men and women during their time at the facility.

So while our elected officials continue to battle over how we move forward with this complex issue, it’s good to know that we are doing the right thing here in our community.

John Colquitt is a Chaparral business owner and volunteer liaison between the community and the detention center.