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Thread: 1,500 unaccompanied immigrant children at shelter in Tornillo

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  1. #1
    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    1,500 unaccompanied immigrant children at shelter in Tornillo

    1,500 unaccompanied immigrant children at shelter in Tornillo; FBI checks delay release

    Aileen B. Flores, El Paso TimesPublished 1:48 p.m. MT Oct. 12, 2018 | Updated 4:59 p.m. MT Oct. 12, 2018

    U.S. Department of Health and Human Services spokesman Mark Weber on Friday, Oct. 12, 2018, discussed the detention of unaccompanied immigrant children at the temporary shelter at the port of entry in Tornillo, Texas. Aileen B. Flores/El Paso Times

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    A backlog of FBI background checks of sponsors is delaying the release of unaccompanied immigrant children from the Tornillo detention center, the incident commander who oversees the shelter's operations said Friday.

    About 60 percent of the 1,500 unaccompanied children housed at the temporary facility are waiting for the background results in order to be released to their relatives or sponsors who live in the United States, said the commander who works for BCFS, the nonprofit contracted to run the shelter.


    The commander asked not to be identified for security reasons.


    None of the children at the shelter are there due to family separations, federal officials said.


    The commander and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services officials explained the delay during a tour for members of the news media of the temporary shelter created for the children at the Tornillo port of entry.


    In June, the Trump administration imposed fingerprinting and background checks on parents and sponsors who came forward to claim custody of the unaccompanied children detained at the border.


    Officials with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services will not say how long exactly it is taking for the fingerprint and background checks to be cleared.


    Mark Weber, a spokesman for the Department of Health and Human Services, said fingerprints and background checks take time and the additional requirements help ensure the security of the children.


    He said there were cases in 2014 in which unaccompanied children were released to criminals.


    “Fingerprinting is adding time, but it’s not impacting the care of the kids,” Weber said.


    Friday was the second time since the shelter opened in mid-June that federal officials allowed news media to access the facility. During the tour, journalists were asked not to speak to children or take photos inside the facility. However, some children approached reporters during the tour.


    Many migrant children said they were treated well at the shelter, but they were looking forward to meeting with their relatives. All said they did not want to go back to their home countries.

    “If God wills it, we are always positive that everything will turn out well,” said a 16-year-old boy from Guatemala.


    A teenage girl said she came to the United States to reunite with her mother.


    A 17-year-old girl said she had left her parents behind in Guatemala. When asked if she was doing fine, she began to cry.


    She said all she wanted was to leave the shelter. The 17-year-old said she had spent five months in shelters.


    The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services released a video of a June 21, 2018, tour of the tent city for detained immigrant children in Tornillo, Texas.Courtesy HHS

    Another teenage girl from Guatemala said she arrived at the shelter a month ago. She said her brother, also an undocumented immigrant, is trying to get custody of her. “I would like to study. I don’t want to go back to my country,” she said.

    The Tornillo shelter, which initially housed about 300 children, has expanded significantly since it opened in June. Officials said the shelter currently has 3,800 beds for the children, with 1,400 on reserved status.


    They said about 1,500 unaccompanied immigrant children between the ages of 13 and 17 are at the Tornillo shelter, with 900 children waiting to be released once background checks are completed.


    About 20 percent, or 300 of the children housed at the shelter, are girls. The children primarily are from Guatemala, El Salvador, and Honduras, officials said. It cost the government about $75 a day per children per night, officials said.


    The highest number of children at the shelter reached was 1,637 on Sept. 28, officials said. On Thursday, the shelter received 143 children, but 165 children were released to sponsors.


    The consul general of Guatemala in Del Rio, Texas, Tekandi Paniagua, said Tuesday that about 950 of the immigrant children at the shelter are Guatemalans. He said they are being treated well.

    The commander, who in June called the separation of children at the border “a stupid decision,” said Friday that while he expected to close the Tornillo shelter in July, an increase on the number of unaccompanied children arriving at the border has prolonged the operations.


    Weber said the current plan is to end operations Dec. 31. But that can change, he said.


    Weber said the continuous operation of the shelter is driven by “the number of kids crossing the border, not the background checks.”


    Officials also emphasized that the family separations that resulted from the Trump administration’s zero tolerance policy that ended June 20 are not driving the detentions.


    Officials said that all the children in the facility are transferred from other shelters. “They don’t come directly from the border to us,” the commander said.


    The shelter facilitates family reunions for children with siblings or relatives within the facility. Officials said there are about 25 families, including six sets of siblings, some of whom are brothers.


    In a news release, officials said a network of just more than 100 shelters in 17 states are being operated. It said the average length of care for children in the program is 59 days, with most of the children being released to suitable sponsors who are family members in the U.S. as they await immigration hearings.


    Officials said people wanting to donate or volunteer to help the children can find information at acf.hhs.gov/orr/state-programs-annual-overview


    However, no donations are being accepted at the gate of the Tornillo shelter.

    https://www.elpasotimes.com/story/ne...se/1616374002/

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  2. #2
    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    NO AMNESTY

    Don't reward the criminal actions of millions of illegal aliens by giving them citizenship.


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  3. #3
    Senior Member Beezer's Avatar
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    Move them into buses and safely transport them back HOME into the care and custody of their authorities. Let their relatives to go pick them up back home!

    Do NOT release them to illegal aliens on our soil.

    We cannot allow the rest of the world to DUMP their children over our border!

    Send them back...give them birth control.

    They cannot breed their way out of poverty and we do not want to pay for it!
    Judy likes this.
    TO BECOME AN AMERICAN YOU MUST CHANGE YOUR VALUES ...NOT YOUR LOCATION

    STAY HOME AND BUILD AMERICA ON YOUR SOIL

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    Senior Member Judy's Avatar
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    Don't let them in to begin with, call the Mexican authorities and report them for human trafficking and child endangerment. If Americans leave their kids in the car on a hot day, they're charged with child endangerment, if Americans loaded up their kids and trekked on foot from DC to LA, you can bet your ass those parents would be in jail. I'm sure what these asylum-seekers are doing violates similar laws in Mexico. Just use your brains and find any reason whatsoever to push this back on Mexico and DO NOT LET THEM INTO THE UNITED STATES. That's the best policy. Minors can not consent to asylum. We need to start applying our laws that we use on ourselves to illegal aliens exploiting asylum laws to violate US immigration law.

    When the President tweets "We're closed" if means you don't let anyone in. Period. Follow your orders and stop ignoring the Commander In Chief of our nation.
    Beezer likes this.
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  5. #5
    Senior Member Beezer's Avatar
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    Load them up on buses at 2am and get them out of here!

    Drive them directly back into the care and custody of their countries authorities!

    Stop this human trafficking!
    Judy likes this.
    TO BECOME AN AMERICAN YOU MUST CHANGE YOUR VALUES ...NOT YOUR LOCATION

    STAY HOME AND BUILD AMERICA ON YOUR SOIL

  6. #6
    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    NO AMNESTY

    Don't reward the criminal actions of millions of illegal aliens by giving them citizenship.


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