“The good news is that they listened,” Representative Sylvia R. Garcia, Democrat of Texas, mentioned of officers at Health and Human Services. Ms. Garcia, a former social employee, mentioned she noticed purple flags on the Houston shelter, a repurposed warehouse, earlier than it even opened. The plan was to deal with about 500 ladies between the ages of 13 and 17. Ms. Garcia mentioned the power didn’t have sufficient loos and there was no clear area for the kids to eat or for recreation.
“They were concerned about the kids. They were concerned about their care — every single one of them,” Ms. Garcia mentioned of the officers she spoke with. The shelter opened on April 1 and closed on April 17. “They were not going to put children at risk.”
Ms. Escobar, whose district consists of the biggest emergency shelter within the Health and Human Services community, at Fort Bliss, mentioned she raised considerations about circumstances early on. And on a go to there on Friday, she mentioned she noticed important enhancements over six weeks in the past.
But, she mentioned, “there are still things that are not acceptable to me.”
For one, the employees couldn’t reply a few of Ms. Escobar’s questions, equivalent to how lengthy youngsters had been staying there. She mentioned youngsters advised her that they had been there for 48 days. “That’s unacceptable,” she mentioned.
Ms. Escobar additionally mentioned the shelter was too large and must be damaged into a number of shelters on the Fort Bliss campus. She mentioned she raised this concern about “mega-sites” with Xavier Becerra, the secretary of well being and human companies, on a latest name with members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus.
Mr. Castro mentioned he shared Ms. Escobar’s considerations, although he dismissed worries concerning the measurement of the shelter and mentioned, throughout a name with reporters on Monday, there needed to be a plan for how one can home these youngsters after they arrive on the border.
He additionally mentioned that the circumstances on the emergency services weren’t solely higher than these on the border services, “but it’s better than what these kids were experiencing before they were in the hands” of border brokers.