The Trump administration has halted the transfer of migrant children to a California detention camp, after public outcry over the plan.
The Trump Administration has halted transfer of migrant children to the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) facility at Camps Roberts and Luna, in California. The two facilities are the only ones in operation to house migrant children. The move comes as a result of a fallout between the Trump Administration and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), which earlier this year decided to stop referring migrant children to the facilities. The move has since been challenged by a lawsuit filed by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) on behalf of the Center for Human Rights and Constitutional Law (CHRCL).
Neither the City of Paso Robles nor the Mayor was officially notified of the decision
PASO ROBLES – The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) will not be sending 5,000 migrant children to Camp Roberts, as the project has been postponed indefinitely. According to a press release from the city of Paso Robles, Mannal Haddad, Carbajal’s communications director, wrote in the SLO Tribune: The Department of Health has informed us that it is not currently considering using Camp Roberts to house unaccompanied minors. Paso Robles Mayor Steve Martin said: I assume that this plan will not be implemented at this time. This does not preclude it from being implemented in the future, but it is not being initiated at this time. In early May, the city of Paso Robles was notified that the Department of Health was considering housing up to 5,000 unaccompanied migrant children at Camp Roberts, near Paso Robles. We’ll get through this together, Atascadero. In a press release from the mayor of Paso Robles, Mayor Martin said: In a recent conference call with federal officials, we were told that up to 5,000 unaccompanied migrant children could be processed at Camp Roberts, Martin said. I have expressed concern about the impact on local transport, health services, educational provision and housing. I was told that when the children were transferred to Camp Roberts, they would not arrive all at once, but in groups of several hundred. I was also assured that medical and educational services would be provided at the base and would not affect local authorities. Martin continued: I explained the housing situation clearly, Martin said. I emphasized that unlike similar operations in urban areas, this could have a significant impact on our community. I have been assured that I will be kept informed of the plans as they develop. However, Mayor Martin is unaware of the recent changes to the plan for migrant children here. I learned this from the media. No one contacted me directly – I had asked to be kept informed of developments and, as I said, I only learned the news when I read it in the media, Mr Martin said. The placement of migrant children at Camp Roberts has raised much concern in the community. Aaron Berg, a local business owner, wrote an article titled How the Immigration Crisis Will Burden Central Coast Businesses, published on 11. May was printed in the Paso Robles Press. The article states: In addition to hotel overcrowding, the overcrowding of migrants and service providers in Paso Robles may have other negative consequences. Traffic and demand for emergency services on which residents depend will increase. With the drought approaching, the increased water use by Camp Roberts will only add to the pressure on the water supply and increase water withdrawals from Lake Nacimiento, which is severely flooded. Now the plan to place the children at Camp Roberts has been shelved, Berg said: While I hope for a solution that will truly help the crisis of unaccompanied migrant children, I am relieved to know that our local infrastructure and housing will not be affected. According to Rep. Carbajal said HHS officials have decided not to proceed with construction of Camp Roberts at this time because the number of unaccompanied minors in HHS custody is decreasing and there is less need for additional space. Mayor Martin stated: I think this will reassure some people in the community who thought there would be complications with surgery so close to us. This is a topic that has generated a lot of discussion, and I have done my best to make sure everyone has the most complete information about what can and cannot happen, and I will continue to encourage our state and federal officials to keep me and our community informed when this plan is renewed in the future.
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