Officials At Controversial Migrant Detention Facility Paint Picture Of Discipline And Care. Critics Still See Traumatized Kids.
A tour for journalists inside the facility that serves as a emergency intake shelter for migrant children includes stops by a soccer field, the phone-home room, the medical clinic and the school classrooms, as well as descriptions of holiday parties and talent shows. Child welfare advocates, though, say that's not reality. "We see a very different picture than the reporters see," Leecia Welch, senior director of legal advocacy and child welfare at the National Center for Youth Law, told NPR.
Migrant Children: Inside The Homestead, Fla. Shelter Facility
Thousands of migrant children continue to arrive at the Southern border every month, without their parents, to ask for asylum. The government sends many of them to an emergency intake shelter in South Florida. That facility has come under intense scrutiny because it's the only child shelter for immigrants that's run by a for-profit corporation and the only one that isn't overseen by state regulators. The Homestead "temporary influx facility" is the biggest and most controversial shelter for migrant children in the country. Critics say the government is warehousing kids in a makeshift prison camp. But on a recent tour, the shelter director took pains to show a different perspective. (Burnett, 2/13)
The Associated Press:
Teen Migrant Detention Facility Allows A Glimpse Inside Gate
Journalists were given a glimpse Wednesday of a newly expanded south-Florida detention facility where nearly 150 teenage migrants sleep in rows of bunk beds in a large windowless room and use portable toilets housed in adjacent tents. The sleeping area in a converted Job Corps building in Homestead, Florida, is just part of the growing detention center operated by a private company for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. (Gomez Licon, 2/13)