Child filled rooms seen in first facility tour since unaccompanied immigration crisis
Wed, 18 Jun 2014 22:44:50 GMT —
A US Border Patrol holding center in Brownsville today opened its doors for a rare look inside the living quarters where hundreds of imigrant children are being held. The Fort Brown Border Patrol facility is designed to hold 250 children, and it is at double its capacity with nearly 500 children and young mothers being held.
More than numbers, faces with tear-filled eyes were seen.
One child broke down in tears behind a glass window begging to be let out and reunited with his mother.
The boy was about 7-years-old, and with him in the holding room were about 50 other young boys.
In the other seven holding rooms were more boys, girls and women with babies.
The rooms were broken up by gender and age. Many were excited, waved and smiled as members of the media were granted access.
The tour is the first for media since President Obama called the unaccompanied children immigration issue a urgent humanitarian situation.
Some unaccompanied children just sat back and sadly stared or were curled up on the ground covered by blankets.
There are no bed in the immigrant holding facilities.
Names like Emmanuel, Junior, Chango and Azael are written on the walls leaving behind the marks of the children who have passed by the immigration system.
Outside, FEMA workers wearing latex gloves combed little girls' hair after their shower as a nearby group of older girls played soccer to get their 30 minutes of daily exercise.
Action 4 News spoke to one woman at Immaculate Conception Church who was released from custody this morning and dropped off at a bus station downtown.
The woman was packing food and clothes for her and her 6 month-old-son Miguel alexander for their trip to New York as they await a court date to be set.
"Being at the facility was horrible. We were just all locked up and had to sleep on the floor. Margarita Elizabeth said. We have nothing to do all day except take care of our babies, and there's some girls that have been in there eight or nine days, but it's just so many immigrant, in the hall ways in the rooms. Too many,
Margarita and her son leave at 11 p.m. and in two days she'll be reunited with her mother.
Her court date before an immigration judge is yet to be determined, but she said she will be present in court.