Big increases in the apprehension of unaccompanied children along the Texas border with Mexico has caused delays in getting nearly 1,000 minors into appropriate migrant shelters, a retired Border Patrol veteran reported Tuesday.
In a report for Breitbart, the former BP official, Randy Clark, cited unnamed sources telling him that Border Patrol facilities are at levels of overcrowding not seen since the 2019 migrant influx — despite the opening of a new facility in Carrizo Springs, Texas.
Nearly 1,000 children are waiting for placement in appropriate Health and Human Services shelters, he wrote.
According to Clark, though Border Patrol has tried to transfer the unaccompanied children into HHS shelters, they’re not being accepted “in a timely manner,” which runs counter to legal requirements. Delays in the transfer in many cases exceed the legal limit of 72 hours, Clark wrote.
The reopening of an HHS Office of Refugee Resettlement facility for unaccompanied children in Carrizo Springs appears to have had little impact on the overcrowding, Clark wrote.
In the meantime, the Uvalde Border Patrol Station, the designated hub for unaccompanied children, is where the coordination of transfer between the Border Patrol and HSS shelters is occurring. But it’s not equipped to meet the standards for long-term detention, he wrote.
Direct placement at the new HHS facility in Carrizo Springs isn’t allowed; the children have to be registered and await placement orders, he wrote.
HHS officials responded to Clark’s reporting, saying “migration patterns are always unpredictable,” and that it oversees some 200 facilities and programs in 22 states.
The statement added, “over the next several months we anticipate bringing more state-licensed beds online” and that the Office of Refugee Resettlement “will continue to work with [the Department of Homeland Security] to prioritize child welfare and keep children out of border stations.”
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